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  1. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/features/Get%20rid%20of%20Google/feature_camera-470-75.jpgBest replacement apps for Android usersAndroid is an operating system built by Google but that doesn't mean that every app you use on your Android handset has to be the creation of those fine folks in California. There's a whole world of faster, sleeker, prettier apps, that don't store all your data just waiting for a download. Here's the complete solution to purging all of Google's in-built apps. MailK-9 Mail is probably the most well known alternative to Google's inbuilt Mail or Gmail apps. Although the interface can feel a little clunky on occasion (namely, every time you open the app up), the range of customisation options is comprehensive, and should let you tweak things to your heart's content. The full range of support for pretty much every mainstream email account is, of course, very welcome. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/features/Get%20rid%20of%20Google/Feature_email-420-90.jpg AquaMail also deserves a mention as the honourable runner-up here. It's a little easier to set up, and also has a more powerful tablet interface, if you prefer to handle your electronic mail on a bigger fondleslab. The paid version is £3.00 (US$4.95, AU$4.95) if you want to unlock all the features, however. SMSA texting app should, in our opinion, be the simplest thing possible – and Hello SMS is about as stripped back as it gets. It claims to be "the first tabbed texting app", and while that's not strictly true, thanks to Google's own Hangouts app, Hello does provide a pretty neat SMS experience. The side tab lets you navigate through conversations, with good touches like adding a flag to show which country an unknown message has come from, or the initials of someone who's actually in your contacts. Messaging is as simple as you'd like it, with threaded conversations just as you'd expect, and a full range of notification customisation options. It even offers and iMessage-style feature (currently in beta), where texts to other hello SMS users are free. CalendarThe replacement that we have used for Google Calendar for a few years now is Agenda, which offers a radically different UI to most calendars. While a month, week or day view is offered, it's the grid-free agenda view (showing your next 10 or so upcoming events) that is most useful. Navigating round the app is simple, once you get the hang of swiping between different views, and even adding events is fairly easy (although multiple calendars could be handled better). The only real downside is the £1.49 (US$1.99, about AU$2.20) asking price. ClockGoogle's Clock app is fairly utilitarian – which, in fairness, is all you really need to get you out of bed in the morning. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/features/Get%20rid%20of%20Google/feature_clock-420-90.jpg If, however, you want to wake up to a design that someone's really put the time and effort into, Timely is a good bet. The simple clock app is better designed than some cathedrals, and once you've got your head around the swipe-based navigation, it's also a fast way to set alarms. Best of all, it won't cost you a single shiny penny. CameraThe main reason to ditch Google's in-built Camera app is the lack of fine manual controls, with The Big G favouring a simplified UI. Camera FV-5 Lite is an excellent free alternative, which puts more advanced controls (exposure, ISO, and metering modes, in particular) onto the viewfinder, as well as a histogram. There's even more under the hood. A good exposure bracketing option can help you make good HDR images, which is often a major help given the small sensors on smartphones. The intervalometer enables timelapse photography, assuming you can bear to part with your smartphone for the duration of an entire sunrise. GalleryQuickPic is everything you want in a photo viewer: super-simple, fast navigation, options that get out of the way quickly when you want to full-screen a photo. It also has integration with all the major cloud services, so that you can pull all your photos into one place. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/features/Get%20rid%20of%20Google/feature_gallery-420-90.jpg The tablet interface is just as good, and best of all, there's support for almost every image format going – including your entire collection of cat GIFs. ChromeChrome's in-built browser is fantastic if you're constantly hopping between desktop and mobile browsing, but its UI isn't the simplest, and there's always the nagging concern about Google recording your worst internet depravities. The most straightforward replacement for Chrome is Dolphin browser, a fast-and-light Android that trades Chrome's frills for some serious performance. There's also a gesture option, that lets you create a gesture to launch the browser from anywhere on your phone. LauncherProbably the most visual change you can make to an Android phone is to strip it of its default launcher (the program that 'makes' the homescreens and app drawer), and replace it with one of the many third-party options that litter the Play Store. The best of the lot is Nova, which offers a ton of features in its free version (and a positively overwhelming smorgasbord in the paid-for edition). You get control over icons, colour schemes, transition animations – pretty much anything, although Nova just about strikes the right balance between simplicity and customisation. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/features/Get%20rid%20of%20Google/feature-nova-420-90.jpg Another standout option, however, is Apex Launcher, which offers nearly the same laundry list of options as Nova. On our test devices, we saw a tiny decrease in performance with Apex over Nova. Although that's arguably balanced out by Apex's superior tablet mode. Either way, both launchers offer a fairly major step up over Google's stock launcher. MapsGoogle's Maps app is hands-down the hardest to replace, because nothing comes close to offering the quality and quantity of mapping info that Google's got on tap. The closest competitior, Apple Maps, is only available on iOS. But if you insist on escaping Eric Schmidt's grasp, MapQuest is probably your best bet. The app itself is surprisingly good, with a simple UI and a good range of options – it's just the mapping data itself that lets it down, with inaccurate and outdated coverage a major problem. At least it's free. Best Android apps: the essential applications you need to download on to your Android device.http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3e7283aa/sc/4/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367596803/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e7283aa/sc/4/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367596803/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e7283aa/sc/4/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367596803/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e7283aa/sc/4/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367596803/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e7283aa/sc/4/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/204367596803/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e7283aa/sc/4/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/P1gn_cI1-yw
  2. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/mobile_phones/Motorola/Moto%20X%202014/motorola-x-2014-apps-470-75.jpgMotorola might not be tied directly with Google anymore, but that isn't stop the company from creating its own stock Android version of the new Moto X. The Verge reports the smartphone maker is will release new version of the Moto X called the Pure Edition this September. This purported device will come unlocked with a version of Android KitKat devoid of Motorola's self made apps such as Moto Display's power saving features or Moto Assist, which dictates your text messages. The device will supposedly even be unbranded making it one of the stealthiest Android devices. As with Google Play devices users also expect to get software updates more quickly without having to wait for approval from carriers or manufacturers to tweak their packaged apps. Packaged dealOther than the repackaged operating system, the Pure Edition Moto X will likely be very similar to the original. The new Moto X features a 5.2 inch, 1080p Full HD screen, which is a step up from the 4.7-inch, 720 display of the original Moto X. Motorola latest flagship device has also been updated with a new metal frame and leather back options for users customizing their handset through the Moto Maker. Internally the smartphone packs a 2.5GHz Snapdragon 801 processor quad-core CPU with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage. The Moto X's cameras aren't much to write about, but users will be able to take good photos with the 13Mp rear camera and 2MP front snapper. Of course, the biggest selling point of the Moto X is its affordable $499 (£419.99, about AU$534), which makes the device a steal considering it uses the same processor as the Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8. Android L may be the first update coming to the Moto Xhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3e69c65f/sc/28/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367604413/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e69c65f/sc/28/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367604413/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e69c65f/sc/28/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367604413/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e69c65f/sc/28/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367604413/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e69c65f/sc/28/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/204367604413/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e69c65f/sc/28/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/FYfU_1AUiC4
  3. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/TRBC/Laptops/Samsung/chromebook2/samsungchromebook2-1-470-75.jpgGoogle has made good on one of its Google IO 2014 promises and has ported over the first batch of Android apps to Chromebooks. Now users will be able to download Android apps such as Evernote save notes to the cloud. Duolingo has also been added to the Chrome App Store to help you learn foreign languages. Alternatively, teach children to read with Slight words, or use Vine to produce short vlogs and other video with a Chromebook's built-in webcam. The Google Chrome Team explained these four apps are just the beginning of its Project Runtime project first announced at Google IO. In the coming months users will see more Android apps come to Google's Chrome OS as the company continues working with smartphone software developers. Moving forward the Google Chrome Team also want's to hear what Android app you want to use on Chrome OS and users can submit their ideas here. Setting up shopGoogle Chromebooks have finally hit their stride. This year we saw the first line of cloud-based laptops equipped with more powerful and battery efficient chips like the Intel Core i3 chip inside the Acer C720 as well as the Acer Chromebook 13 rocking Nvidia's Tegra K1 processor. Now that computer manufacturers finally have the hardware locked down it seems like its time for the software to step up its game. In our own adventures reviewing the Dell Chromebook 11 and Acer C720P, we found Google's cloud platform was good for very little beyond using its first party web apps. Although Chrome has its own app store, its filled with adware posing as familiar game titles and there's a lack of powerful image editing apps. These newly added Android apps could help fill out Chrome OS's lack of software. What will be more interesting to see if apps catch on and it ends up taking over Chrome OS when Google originally set out to create platform of affordable laptops powered by the web. Here's the top 5 Chromebooks out there todayhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3e60afba/sc/28/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/206157696932/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e60afba/sc/28/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/206157696932/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e60afba/sc/28/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/206157696932/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e60afba/sc/28/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/206157696932/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e60afba/sc/28/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/206157696932/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e60afba/sc/28/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/IG-w_fMYtIM
  4. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/Watches/Motorola/Moto%20360/Review/moto-360-google-now-470-75.jpgAs promised Google is supporting its burgeoning Android Wear smartwatch platform with more updates. The search company announced the first update will bring offline GPS support and offline music playback to wearables running its smartwatch OS. Firstly smartwatches with built-in GPS sensors such as Sony's SmartWatch 3 will track your distance and speed when you go on a run. There's no official word whether GPS support include turn-by-turn direction or display a map that tracks your position, but it seems like one of the obvious uses for smartwatches. The first update will come in the next few months and it will also bring offline music playback letting users wireless stream songs stored on their smartwatch to a pair of Bluetooth headphones. Google imagines both these new features will be useful for users who want to leave their smartphone during a run or bike ride. After all, no one likes having a mobile device jumping around their pocket during a workout. Once users come back home the watch will re-sync, transferring your all your updated stats. What face is it?The second update Google has lined up will bring downloadable watch faces. These new designs won't just include different analog and digital clock faces, users will also be able to customize their watch's home screen with widgets like their calendar and fitness data. Soon enough users will also be able to download new developer-created watch faces from the Google Play store. Lastly Google promises it's working with manufacturers to create even more watch options on top of the dozen or so it helped introduce at IFA 2014. Supposedly these new wearables will feature different shapes, styles and sensors. Get a good look at the Moto 360 because you're chances of getting one are slimhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3e312cc6/sc/28/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367360048/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e312cc6/sc/28/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367360048/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e312cc6/sc/28/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367360048/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e312cc6/sc/28/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367360048/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e312cc6/sc/28/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/204367360048/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e312cc6/sc/28/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/2JOVJ1GK8Jw
  5. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/other/Onetimers/google-android-wear-google-now-470-75.jpgGoogle has promised that it will release frequent updates to Android Wear, the smartwatch OS being adopted by companies like Asus, Samsung, Motorola, LG, and others. Smartwatches will change much more rapidly than smartphones, the company said, and Google wants to stay at the forefront and actively shape how Android Wear evolves, according to CNET. And unlike in smartphones, Google can reportedly push out Android Wear updates without having to run them by carriers first, a step that makes the smartphone update process take longer than it otherwise would. Google reportedly has several Android Wear updates scheduled to arrive before the end of the year, with the first coming this week. Future watchThese Android Wear updates will add features like the ability to pair smartwatches with Bluetooth headsets and the ability for smartwatches that have GPS to use geolocation to track users' fitness sessions. Google also plans to add a streamlined way for third-party developers to design their own Android Wear watch faces that users will be able to swap in and out on a whim - to display live sports game scores, stocks or other specific data. Google's Android Wear Engineering Director David Singleton told CNET that thousands of existing Android apps have already been updated to support Android Wear. He added that Google will enable other connection types besides Bluetooth as its Android Wear hardware partners start expressing the desire to build watches that use them. Meanwhile Android Vice President of Engineering Hiroshi Lockheimer said the company wants to keep updating Android Wear as quickly as possible. He said "it's a lot simpler on watches," where there are less steps in the update pipeline. Here's everything there is to know about Android Wearhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3e14c903/sc/15/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367201354/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e14c903/sc/15/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367201354/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e14c903/sc/15/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367201354/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e14c903/sc/15/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367201354/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e14c903/sc/15/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/204367201354/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e14c903/sc/15/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/d8CULcd9U7M
  6. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/events/Google%20IO%202014/phone-470-75.jpgGoogle has been working hard to introduce a new Android One platform of low-cost smartphones to developing markets like India and very soon we could see the fruits of its labor. Google will purportedly hold an event in India on September 15 to introduce the first crop of Android One, according to NDTV. So far three phone manufacturers including Micromax, Karbonn Mobile and Spice Mobile have all signed on with Google to produce sub $100 (about £60, AU$107) smartphones. Other than an affordable price, there aren't any many solid details on what each smartphone maker has in mind. However, Google did highlight a Micromax phone would feature 4.5-inch screen, dual-SIM, an SD slot and FM radio at its Google IO 2014 developer conference. There's nothing too dizzying about these specs compared to the rumors of the supremely powerful Samsung Galaxy Note 4, but keep in mind this is the search company's sub $100 smartphone model. Androids everywherehttp://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/other/Onetimers/Google%20Android%20One%20Invite-420-90.jpg Google plans to fill in the affordable, low-end smartphone market with its Android One initiative. As part of the program Google has oversight over what software goes into each Android One handset. As such each device will come running stock Android with very few "locally relevant" apps preloaded on the handsets. In exchange for great control over the software on Android One handsets, the search company promised smartphone makers it would share resources to reduce costs. Android One handsets will also receive updates much more quickly just like the search company's Nexus and Google Play devices. On top of this Sundar Pichai also said Google is also working with local Indian carriers to provide users affordable plans. If everything goes as planned Google could use its new platform to get Android smartphones in the hands of many more people around the world. Chances are we could see some of these more affordable Android One smartphones come to the US, United Kingdom and elsewhere. Here's everything to know about Google's other mobile OS, Android Lhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3e0c4df5/sc/15/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367117525/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e0c4df5/sc/15/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367117525/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e0c4df5/sc/15/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367117525/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e0c4df5/sc/15/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367117525/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e0c4df5/sc/15/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/204367117525/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e0c4df5/sc/15/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/LgXg7rJaaDw
  7. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/Watches/Asus/Asus_smartwatch_IFA_sketch_2-470-75.jpgIFA 2014 is still just days away but it seems the tech world has fallen fully into wearable fever. The Central New Agency, a Taiwanese newspaper, has the scoop on Asus' first smartwatch called the ZenWatch and reports it will come to market for less than $199 (about £119, AU$212). If the rumors are true this would make the ZenWatch extremely competitive with the Pebble Steel and LG G Watch and droves of other more expensive wearables. Aside from the price, the Taiwanese paper also reported Asus' smartwatch will be available later this October. Even then the ZenWatch's release will be limited to the US and a few other markets. Technological zenYouTube : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GvzkwpQbO50As for new features, the ZenWatch will purportedly include a few more voice controls on top the ones that come preprogrammed into Android Wear. Supposedly the watch will also be able to functions in some capacity even without pairing with a smartphone. For now details are still sketchy even with Asus recently releasing a new teaser video giving us a better look at the watch We're just days away from the ZenWatch's reveal, which is rumored to take place ahead of the IFA 2014 festivities this Wednesday. Until then stay tuned to TechRadar as we bring you the latest news before and during the big German tech conference. Will Apple finally jump into the wearable game with an iWatch?http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3e0c076e/sc/28/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367160822/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e0c076e/sc/28/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367160822/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e0c076e/sc/28/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367160822/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e0c076e/sc/28/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204367160822/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e0c076e/sc/28/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/204367160822/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3e0c076e/sc/28/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/5OiTgrJigHA
  8. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/events/google/Google%20IO%202012/GOOGLE%20I-O%20DAY%20ONE/P6271394-470-75.JPGAndroid L release dateAndroid L is now out in the open and it includes a handful of new features, a visual overhaul and numerous under-the-hood improvements to make if faster, more efficient and lighter on your battery, but while we know all about it, it's not yet available for public consumption. Even once it does launch it will be down to individual manufacturers to port it to their devices, so chances are you'll still be waiting a while to get it on your phone and tablet (unless you've gone full Nexus already) and most companies haven't yet been all that forthcoming with details of when they'll bring it to their phones and tablets. But we do know some things and we can take educated guesses at others, so read on for all the information and theories on when you might see Android L on your device. GoogleAndroid L is Google's baby and so you can guarantee that some of its Nexus devices will be the first to get it. The developer preview is already available for the Nexus 5 and the new Nexus 7, so presumably they'll be the first two devices to get the final version. That makes sense as they're the most recent Nexus devices. As for when that will be, Google hasn't gone into specifics, but it has said that Android L should be available 'this fall', which presumably means sometime in September, October or November. And don't forget: Google likes to release big updates to Android with a specific device as well, which means we could have seen the Nexus 6 and Nexus 8 at the same time to join the Android L party. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Google/nexus5/Press/Nexus5-Press-02-420-90.jpg According to Google it supports its devices for around 18 months, which means the original Nexus 7, the Nexus 10 and the Nexus 4 might not get the update, though we reckon that there's a good chance that they will, especially as Google has published Android L source code for all those devices. Assuming they do get Android L they're likely to be among the first devices to receive it too. Any Nexus device older than them is all but guaranteed not to get it however, meaning the Galaxy Nexus and Nexus S owners are plum out of luck. Google Play Edition devices, such as the HTC One Play Edition and the Samsung Galaxy S4 Play Edition fall within the 18 month update window so they're also likely to get it. Better yet, they'll probably receive the update shortly after it hits Nexus devices. Technically it's up to the device manufacturers, not Google, but as they run stock Android it should take minimal time and work to upgrade them. In fact the Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One Google Play Editions started getting the Android 4.4.3 update within a day of it hitting Nexus handsets, so the wait might be tiny. HTCHTC has been more forthcoming with its update plans than most manufacturers and it's no surprise given how quickly it plans to bring the update to users. In a statement the company said: "HTC is excited about the new features in Android L and we can't wait to share them with our customers. We are committed to updating our flagship HTC One family as fast as possible. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/HTC/HTC_OneM8/HandsOn2/HTC%20One%20M8%20review%20(9)-420-90.JPG "We will begin rolling out updates to the HTC One (M8) and HTC One (M7) in regions worldwide within 90 days of receiving final software from Google, followed shortly thereafter by other One family members and select devices." Doing the mathematics that means the company's most recent two flagships should get Android L either at the end of the year or possibly in January of next year, depending on exactly when Google launches Android L. We're going to go ahead and assume that most other HTC handsets released in the last year or so will also get the update at some point. As a general rule the more recent and high profile a device is the more likely it is to get an update, so the HTC One Mini 2, the HTC One Mini and perhaps the HTC One Max and some of the recent Desire handsets are likely to get the update, though probably not until sometime after the One M7 and the One M8. SamsungSamsung is yet to shed any light on when it will be bringing Android L to its phones, which is a shame, given just how many people are walking around with a Samsung handset. We can take an educated guess though. Assuming it launches after Android L, the Galaxy Note 4 is likely to come running the new version from day one and if not it will likely be updated quickly - current guesses have this model showing up at IFA in September, which may be a little early to launch with Android L. The Galaxy S5 and Galaxy Note 3 are likely to get the update very shortly after it launches, probably within the same sort of several month timeframe as HTC is operating under. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Samsung/GalaxyS5/Hands%20on/P1060941-420-90.JPG These are major handsets so Samsung will want to get the update to them ASAP, not to mention the fact that the Galaxy S4 and the Galaxy Note 3 received the Android 4.4 update very soon after it launched. Other Samsung handsets may have to wait a little longer as the company is still in the process of bringing Android 4.4.2 to certain devices, however we'd expect that most high profile devices released in the last 18 months to 2 years will get the update, including the Samsung Galaxy S4, the Galaxy S4 Mini and the yet-to-be-released Galaxy S5 Mini. We doubt that the Samsung Galaxy S3 or anything older will get Android L. It's a device that's already over two years old and some versions of it didn't even get Android 4.4. Samsung also sometimes neglects lower end devices, for example the Galaxy Ace 3 never got updated, so we doubt it will this time either and similarly the upcoming Galaxy Ace 4 is unlikely to get a taste of Android L. Samsung doesn't seem great at updating its tablets either. There's a good chance recent slates like its Note Pro and Tab S ranges and even the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 will get Android L but anything older or low end is iffy. SonyWe asked Sony about its Android L plans and a spokesperson replied that: "We're enthused by early reaction to the "Android L" preview. Whilst we can't share roadmap specifics yet, we'll continue to bring unique Sony software matched with the latest Android experiences to as many Xperia users as possible - so stay tuned." So the company is staying quiet for now, but the response does hint that it's interested in bringing Android L to its devices, as you might expect. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Sony/XperiaZ2/HandsOn2/XperiaZ2-HandsOn-14-420-90.JPG There's a fair chance that the Sony Xperia Z3 will launch with Android L, especially as the Xperia Z2 shipped with Android 4.4.2, which at the time was the latest version and had only been available for a few months. However, again, the Z3 will be launched in September at IFA, so that might be a little early for the next version of Android. Speaking of the Z2, that model will likely get updated to Android L and users are unlikely to have to wait long for it as Sony brought the last update, Android 4.4.4, to some of its handsets within a week of launch. Sure, that's a minor release but it still shows that Sony is committed to delivering updates in a timely fashion. We'd also expect that the Sony Xperia Z1 and Xperia Z1 Compact will get Android L within the first few months that it's available. There's a good chance the Xperia Z will get it too, but with it approaching 18 months old this is likely to be the last major update it receives. As for tablets, the Xperia Z2 Tablet is pretty much a dead cert, though it may have to wait a while as Sony didn't bring Android 4.4 to the Xperia Tablet Z till almost 7 months after the software became available. There's a good chance that the Tablet Z will get the update too, but as with the Xperia Z this will probably be the last major update it gets, if it does receive it at all. LGLG has told us that it currently has no update "on if / when Android L will be coming to the LG G3." That 'if' doesn't fill us with confidence, but we'd be very surprised if the company's flagship didn't get the new version of Android. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/LG/LG%20G3/Hands%20on%202/LG_G3_Review%20(11)-420-90.JPG Not only would it be a strange decision not to, but the LG G2 got updated from Android 4.2 to Android 4.4. The update started rolling out roughly four months after Android 4.4 launched, so if the same thing happens again then you can expect the LG G3 to get it early next year. We imagine that the LG G2 and LG G2 Mini will probably get updated too and the LG G3 Beat is bound to get updated. MotorolaMotorola's VP of product management Punit Soni replied to a Google Plus user's question of whether the Moto X would get Android L with a simple "Yup". So it's coming for at least that phone, but Soni didn't shed any light on when. Prior to that, AndroidOrigin reported that a customer service representative told a user that both the Moto G and the Moto X would be getting Android L, while they had no information on whether or not the Moto E would be getting it. That doesn't sound hugely promising for the Moto E but it's good news for Motorola's other two recent handsets. Of course you should take this with a pinch of salt, as it's rare for customer services to give out information ahead of an official announcement. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Motorola/Moto%20G/Press/MotoG_1-420-90.jpg Still, we'd be surprised if Motorola didn't bring Android L to at least the Moto G alongside the X, given how popular that handset is. Motorola's UI is very close to stock Android as well so it shouldn't be as much work to get new versions up and running and back when the company was owned by Google it was pretty prompt with updates, unsurprisingly. Things might be different now that Lenovo's in the driving seat, but we doubt there'll be too long a wait for Android L on the Moto X and perhaps also the Moto G and Moto E. OnePlusThe OnePlus One is still bizarrely hard to get hold of thanks to the requirement for an invitation, but if you have managed to get your hands on one you'll be pleased to know that the company plans to upgrade it Android L (or a CyanogenMod build based on Android L anyway). http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/OnePlus/OnePlus%20One/HandsOn2/OnePlusOne-HandsOn-05-420-90.JPG In a statement posted to the OnePlus forums a staff member confirmed that not only would its first and only handset be getting Android L, but that it would arrive within three months of Google releasing a final build. So the same time frame as HTC in other words. HuaweiLike most manufacturers, Huawei hasn't yet shared any details on its Android L plans. Unfortunately it's not always the quickest at updating its phones either as it only recently started rolling out Android 4.4 to the Ascend P6 for example and the Ascend G6 is still waiting for it. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Huawei/Ascend%20P7/Ascend%20P7%20review/hands-on/p7-hands-10-420-90.jpg The company's latest flagship, the Ascend P7, shipped with Android 4.4 and we imagine it will probably get Android L, but possibly not any time soon. We're less sure whether any of the company's other phones will get it, but fingers crossed. ZTEIf you're one of the relatively few with a ZTE handset you might be wondering if and when Android L will be arriving for it. Unfortunately so are we and this is one case where it's very much an 'if' rather than a 'when'. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/ZTE/BladeQMini/BladeQMini-Press-03-420-90.jpg Fairly recent phones like the ZTE Blade V and the ZTE Blade Q Mini launched with old versions of Android and they haven't been updated, so we're not optimistic that they'll get Android L. NvidiaNvidia might not be high on most people's radars when it comes to Android devices, but gaming fans might be interested in knowing if and when the Nvidia Shield will be getting Android L. Nvidia told us that "we've worked hard to support every official Android release in the past, as you can see with our SHIELD portable and our software team is always working hard to bring new features and the latest updates with no delay. We try to make sure that updates come as close to their announcement as possible." So while it didn't go so far as to confirm anything it sounds very likely that the Nvidia Shield will get Android L and probably quite soon after launch. There's a new version of iOS on the way too.http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3d6b4689/sc/28/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204366444673/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3d6b4689/sc/28/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204366444673/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3d6b4689/sc/28/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204366444673/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3d6b4689/sc/28/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204366444673/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3d6b4689/sc/28/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/204366444673/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3d6b4689/sc/28/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/UYAlAry--qE
  9. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/mobile_phones/Android/android_lollies-470-75.jpgThere are some apps you just don't want your kids to use, even if they otherwise have free run of your smartphone. And Android phones currently have no feature to accommodate that. But that's changing with the introduction of multiple user accounts in upcoming versions of Android, a Google employee confirmed in a thread on the Android issue tracker. Having multiple user accounts on a single device essentially lets you lock certain apps behind a password. Unless your kids, co-workers or other snoopers know the password to your account, they're not getting into anything you don't want them to. This feature debuted on Android tablets in 2013, but Google has waited until now to put it on smartphones too. Just don't forget your passwordHowever it's unfortunately unclear exactly when or how multiple user accounts will arrive on Android phones, despite this Google project member's promise that it will arrive "as a a part of the next public build." Does that mean the next public build of the current public release of Android - which would be Android KitKat - or of Android L, the new version launching this year? We've asked Google to clarify, and we'll update here if we hear back. Until then don't get too excited about all the things you can do on your phone when you're guaranteed to be the only person who can access certain apps. Android L vs Android 4.4 - what's new?http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3d40f723/sc/28/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204366277082/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3d40f723/sc/28/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204366277082/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3d40f723/sc/28/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204366277082/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3d40f723/sc/28/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/204366277082/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3d40f723/sc/28/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/204366277082/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3d40f723/sc/28/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/gNQ3RuAEy8A
  10. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/Watches/Motorola/Moto%20360/moto-360-watch-face-470-75.jpgIt seems everyone has had an unfortunate run-in with digital rights management (DRM) at one time or another, and now Android Wear users are having theirs. Early adopters of Google's smartwatch standard have found that paid apps simply don't work on Android Wear devices, according to Ars Technica. Currently there are no standalone apps for Android Wear devices; apps with Wear features need to be downloaded to an Android phone, which then sends the relevant part of the app to the smartwatch using Bluetooth. But apparently the encryption keys that get sent to your phone when you download a paid app from the Google Play store don't make it over to the smartwatch. A strange oversightThat means Android Wear devices that receive app data from smartphones have no way to decrypt that data unless the app was free to begin with. So one solution is for developers to make their Android Wear-compatible apps free, though obviously that's not ideal. It's definitely still early in the saga of Android Wear, but this is a strange oversight that should definitely have been caught before now. We've asked Google to comment on when the bug might be fixed, and we'll update here if we hear back. Your Android Wear smartwatch could become a neat home automation toolhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3c439744/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109260986/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c439744/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109260986/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c439744/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109260986/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c439744/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109260986/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c439744/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199109260986/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c439744/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/IAVALVTtU0k
  11. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/Watches/Android_Wear_Home_Automation-470-75.jpgThe new breed of Android Wear devices could become a key tool in the ever-expanding connected home sphere, according to one developer already putting his smartwatch to good use. Developer Doug Gregory is using a selection of AutoApps and OK Google voice commands in order to control the lighting in his home and open and close his connected garage door. Using a pre-release Samsung Gear Live paired with a HTC One (M8) Gregory uses commands like "OK Google, toggle the light," to switch it on. He's also able to use the touchscreen to adjust the lighting and control that garage door, albeit with a bit of a lag. The tool also shows photos on his device that switch between on/off or open/closed. RootedGregory uses the AutoVera, AutoVoice, and AutoNotification Tasker tools, which are all compatible with Android Wear out of the box, but had to root the device. He reckons other developers will soon get around that and launch tools that play nice with Android Wear, when it is officially released on July 7. You can check out his work so far in the video below. " width="420">YouTube : http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3c34a46b/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199120424054/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c34a46b/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199120424054/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c34a46b/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199120424054/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c34a46b/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199120424054/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c34a46b/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199120424054/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c34a46b/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/s9K51aeraZ0
  12. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/other/Onetimers/Google%20Play%20Services%205.0-470-75.jpgAlong with announcing the availability of Android Wear apps earlier today, the search company also pushed out Google Play Services 5.0 to almost all Android devices. There's no need to download it either. The services update comes through the Google Play Store to almost all smartphones and tablets running Android 2.3 Gingerbread to 4.4 KitKat. Google Service 5.0 brings with it API designed to make it easier for users to communicate with apps running on Android Wear devices. In a developer update Google wrote that the 5.0 update allows apps to sync data, exchange control messages, and transfer data between wearables and compatible phones. Matchmaker, make me a matchThe Android Wear specific updates will only work with devices. What's more smartwatches and activity trackers running Google's wearable OS will only work with certain handsets. To help users make sense of whether devices can pair properly, the Mountain View company launched an Android Wear Check website. The online tool allows users to check the compatibility of their smartphone before trying to find a match. Everything elseAside from all the Android Wear specific tools, the updates services also adds a dynamic security provider allowing developers to rapidly deliver security patches. A necessity in today's world when it seems like some other app has been breached every week. A tweak to Google Wallet adds the option to save offers or deals to their wallet. At registers and online carts users can now pay for goods with both their Google Wallet Balance and linked credit or debit cards in case they don't have enough virtual currency in the bank to make the purchase. The virtual wallet will also know when users have walked into a store by tracking their location data to automatically pull up loyalty cards and offers. Google hopes this will save the user the hassle of digging and carrying around the items physically when they can simply scan codes from their phones. On the developer side app makers will be happy to hear Google has improved analytics capabilities for ecommerce sites. The updated tools include new ways to measure marketing and merchandising strategies, and search for the app like a webpage with an updated indexing API. Google preps for Android Wear but what of Android L?http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3c265223/sc/15/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109139813/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c265223/sc/15/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109139813/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c265223/sc/15/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109139813/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c265223/sc/15/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109139813/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c265223/sc/15/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199109139813/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c265223/sc/15/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/BF473W1SwMs
  13. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/mobile_phones/Android/AndroidL/Android%20L%202/Android%20L%20iOS8-470-75.jpgAndroid L vs iOS 8The battle for mobile's soul is raging and there are only two heavyweight platform contenders. Google's Android and Apple's iOS are getting better (and more similar) with every passing year. The latest incarnations, Android L and iOS 8, made their entrances at developer conferences, WWDC and Google I/O. Let's take a look at how they compare and work out whether Apple and Google are treading their own paths or starting to converge. UI – Minimalism is inAndroid L is a big change in terms of user interface as Google looks to unleash "Material Design", a new look that's consistent across Android, Chrome OS, the Chrome browser, and Android Wear. It includes a familiarly sparse aesthetic with bold colours and a new typography. There are lots more animations for touch feedback and transitions between apps, there's more of a 3D feel with shadows, and a nested scrolling effect that slots UI elements out of the way when you don't need them. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Android/AndroidL/Android%20L%202/Android%20L%205-420-90.jpg Apple killed skeuomorphism with iOS 7, so major surgery wasn't deemed necessary for iOS 8 and it retains the same clean and uncluttered look - Android L seems to take a little from iOS 6 (with the more realistic designs) and some from iOS 8, following the trend for flatter designs. Under the surfaceThe iOS 8 SDK contains more than 4,000 new APIs for developers, but apparently the Android L SDK trumps it with more than 5,000. Of course, everything depends on what those APIs actually have to offer, but Android L also brings support for 64-bit processors, which we saw roll out in iOS 7. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Android/AndroidL/Android%20L%202/9-420-90.jpg Google has finally dumped Dalvik and made ART (Android RunTime) the new engine, which should offer a significant speed boost. It uses AOT (Ahead-of-Time) instead of JIT (Just-in-Time) compiling, which improves a lot of elements, but among the primary benefits are general performance and battery life. Apple switched to the Swift programming language for iOS 8 and OS X development, which is intended to safeguard against errors and offer improved performance for developers when coding for iPhones and iPads. These are tools that will give developers the chance to make apps with fewer bugs, so we're waiting to hear the verdict on which will be the platform that has the best changes. Notifications everywhereThe rival platforms are creeping ever closer in terms of notifications. Apple added interactive notifications to the lockscreen with iOS 8 and made them less intrusive with pop-ups at the top of the screen in apps. Google has done much the same in Android L with notifications on the lockscreen that can carry you straight into the apps, and pop-ups at the top of the screen when you're already doing something. They're also newly ordered by relevance, based on your past activity. For the 15% of people using PINs or pattern locks, Google has added a new authentication system that can determine when you're holding your phone using location awareness and attached Bluetooth devices and unlock it automatically for you. It seems pretty likely that Apple will do the same with the iWatch when it (probably) launches later in the year, and along with TouchID shows the Cupertino brand is looking as much as anyone at ways of making your body the ultimate password. Smartwatch compatibilityThe Android Wear platform is rolling out for developers and the LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Live are available to order now. Apps on your Android device will automatically download and update themselves on any Android Wear device that you link. They can also sync between devices, so you can follow a recipe on your watch and on your smartphone at the same time - which is pretty neat when you can simply tap the screen and start a timer if the recipe called for it. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/other/Onetimers/google-wear-smartwatch-420-90.jpg Google looks like it's rolling out dedicated Android Wear apps too - which appeared on the Play Store then were quickly pulled - so it shows that the Big G thinks that wearables are the future (we've not even talked about Glass either). Apple has yet to announce an iWatch, but the updated Health app and the HealthKit API for iOS 8 are designed to make it easier to extract fitness and health data, and the fruity brand's new wrist-dweller is set to pack all manner of sensors as it looks to become the ultimate device to show you just how fit and healthy you are. Battery savingAndroid L offers greater control over battery life with new enhancements and modes that enable users to fine tune how much juice apps can guzzle down. 'Project Volta' goes into depth on where your battery is draining and a baked in battery saver mode can make tweaks to extend its life. This saving mode is something we've seen a lot of Android OEMs adding in their UIs already though, and we'd have loved to see an 'extreme battery saving mode' like HTC and Samsung have done to really eke out the battery life. Apple is lagging behind a little, but iOS 8 will finally bring a Battery Usage screen that actually shows which apps are leeching the most power when running and on standby, so you can make informed decisions with your settings. Android Auto vs CarplayGoogle's Open Automotive Alliance is growing fast with 40 new partners since we last heard about it. Android Auto will allow you to plug in your Android device and get a simplified interface with voice controls. You can easily browse navigation and entertainment content, as well as take calls and messages. Once the device is connected you use the car controls, but the software remains on the phone. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Android/AndroidL/Android%20L%202/Android%20Auto-420-90.jpg It looks very similar to Apple's CarPlay, in form and function, and it will be interesting to see which platform the big manufacturers favour. Google and Apple are both pushing forward as quickly as possible and we'll see both Android Auto and CarPlay models on the road later this year. Merging with the laptop Android L will allow people to unlock their Chrome OS laptop automatically when their Android device is close. There's also a sharing of notifications, so your Chromebook can mirror your Android device notifications and warn you when the phone battery is low. There's even some app crossover as some big name Android apps like Evernote, Flipboard, and Vine appear on Chrome OS. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/tablets/Google/nexus%209%20render-420-90.jpg Apple has done something similar with iOS 8 and the forthcoming OS X Yosemite with its Handoff feature, which allows you to pick up activities in apps on your laptop or desktop and start where you left off on your iPhone. You can also handle calls and messages from your iPhone on your Mac too. Other highlightsThere are plenty of other juicy features and updates in both platforms. Android L also offers greater integration with the Chrome browser, tabs now appear right next to apps when you tap the multitasking button, and you can dive straight into installed apps from browser results. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/events/wwdc/2014/screengrabs/touch-id-third-party-apps-420-90.jpg Apple opened up its Touch ID authentication for more apps, unveiled a time-lapse camera mode, and beefed up messaging options with location sharing and self-destructing messages. We'll keep you posted on everything else Android L and iOS 8 have to offer as we find it. AvailabilityDevelopers can get their hands on Android L and iOS 8 right now, but we'll have to wait a little longer for a proper release date. Our best guess is that iOS 8 will land on the new iPhone, probably in September, and will appear on older devices when the iPhone 6 goes on sale. Android L is likely to be a month or two later, probably on a new Nexus device - we're hearing stuff about the Nexus 6 and Nexus 8, and given Android L will be here in the 'Fall', the likelihood is we'll be getting new Nexii, complete with the L treatment, in time for the Christmas period. We're still waiting on Windows Phone 9.http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3c0e7c4d/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109041146/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c0e7c4d/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109041146/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c0e7c4d/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109041146/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c0e7c4d/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199109041146/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c0e7c4d/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199109041146/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3c0e7c4d/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/SrhmefDGhDs
  14. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/other/Onetimers/android-wear-moto-360-close-up-470-75.jpgGoogle has confirmed that manufacturers will not be able to alter the user interface for devices running its three new Android operating systems. Following the launch of Android Wear, Android TV and the in-car Android Auto platform at Google I/O there was doubt over whether OEMs would have the freedom to overlay their own custom takes on the Android. Google engineering director David Burke says the firm wants a more consistent approach across these devices, claiming that UI is more important to the actual product than, say, it is to Android for phones or tablets. He told Ars Technica: "The UI is more part of the product in this case. We want to just have a very consistent user experience, so if you have one TV in one room and another TV in another room and they both say Android TV, we want them to work the same and look the same." 'It should be the same'Burke added that manufacturers like HTC, Samsung, LG and Motorola will have the freedom to add their own services and apps into the mix, but that's as far as it'll go. He said: "The device manufacturers can brand it, and they might have services that they want to include with it, but otherwise it should be the same." The decision explains why the Samsung Gear Live, the LG G Watch and Moto 360 smartwatches all look so similar on the software side of things. Late last week, Samsung itself said it would be looking to add its multitude of services, some from its Galaxy smartphones and others from its Gear watches into the mix. Do you think Google has made the right call in keeping the new versions of Android pure? Or is it another sign of Google walling off the open source garden? Let us know your thoughts below. Is ASUS next to join the Android Wear crowd?http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3bfd824a/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199107504561/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3bfd824a/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199107504561/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3bfd824a/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199107504561/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3bfd824a/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199107504561/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3bfd824a/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199107504561/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3bfd824a/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/FEVYCKwWPu0
  15. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/mobile_phones/Google/nexus5/HandsOn2/Nexus5-HandsOn-03-470-75.JPGRumours suggesting Google will retire the range of Nexus devices are unfounded, according to the head of Android engineering. Dave Burke has spoken up following a series of reports claiming the 'pure' Android smartphones and tablets would be replaced by the Android Silver program. He said those dishing out prophecies of impending Nexus doom are jumping the gun. "People just get excited by concepts and forget why we do things," he told the ReadWrite blog. "We are still invested in Nexus... People have been commenting about Nexus because there is something else and they think that means the end of Nexus. That is the totally wrong conclusion to make." Truth bombsA recent leak showcased a potential 8.9-inch HTC Nexus 9 tablet codenamed 'Volantis,' which many, including us at TechRadar, speculated could be the last Nexus device. Meanwhile, a Nexus 8 is also reportedly on the way. If Burke is dropping truth bombs rather than serving up a smoke screen then we could be seeing annual Nexus device launches for many years to come. When Burke mentions 'something new', he is presumably referencing the forthcoming Android Silver platform, which could see the launch of more Nexus-style devices with the raw Android experience. Google reportedly plans to give these Android Silver devices special marketing treatment, while offering a premium customer service experience. New Google Nexus 7 reviewhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3bf17a95/sc/15/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108923331/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3bf17a95/sc/15/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108923331/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3bf17a95/sc/15/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108923331/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3bf17a95/sc/15/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108923331/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3bf17a95/sc/15/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199108923331/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3bf17a95/sc/15/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/6iyTKFtxbNU
  16. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/mobile_phones/Android/Android_OK_Google_Via_Droid_Life-470-75.jpgGoogle's gradual roll out of voice commands across its range of mobile and web services has continued with an update that makes "OK Google" recognisable across the Android system. The Google Search 3.5.14 for Android update, allows users to summon the 'hotword' command from anywhere on their phone and tablet, even when the device is locked. Users can turn on the enhanced hotword detection by heading to Menu > Settings> Voice and toggling the settings. Early reports claim the new system wide integration, first rumoured in April this year, works well in testing. Audio HistoryAlso coming to the new Google Search app, which some users are already seeing, is a new Audio History tool to boost voice searches. The feature learns the sound of your voice and your pronunciation habits in order to yield more accurate search results. Droid-Life has posted this neat hands-on video showing off the new functionality " width="420">YouTube : http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3be9340e/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199107422613/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3be9340e/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199107422613/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3be9340e/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199107422613/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3be9340e/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199107422613/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3be9340e/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199107422613/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3be9340e/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/6y8xE4-I8Ko
  17. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/events/Google%20IO%202014/Android%20Tree-470-75.jpgNew vs old: Android comparedHead of Android Sundar Pichai took to the stage at Google IO 2014 to deliver one of the biggest overhauls of Android yet - a whole new look and some big changes under the hood too. Sadly, it's only a peek at the new OS, as Google tries to appease manufacturers who think launching new versions of Android later in the year ruins plans to get the new platform on handsets for the holidays... but there's still enough to get worked up over. Android L: release date, news and featuresAndroid L not only marks a breakaway from Android naming tradition, that of sugary treats, but comes packed with over 5000 new developer APIs that help mark Android L as the "biggest release in the history of Android". So what exactly makes this update so big and so important, and more importantly why should you be pining for the letter L rather than the chocolate goodness of Android KitKat? User interfaceThe biggest change that users will notice is the whole new design language that has been developed with Android L introducing design guidelines that have previously been missing from the Android ecosystem. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Android/AndroidL/Android%20L%202/2-420-90.jpg Known as Material Design, Google's new interface has been created "not just for mobile but for form factors beyond mobile" said Pichai. Android 4.4 KitKat and previous iterations suffer from a mishmash of app designs; the Gmail app differs largely from the messaging app which in turn differs largely from Facebook. Instead the new guidelines offer up a way of making the whole device feel unified. This new design also brings an almost 3D effect, offered as Android L now enables developers to add an elevation value to any UI surface which will come rendered "in correct perspective with virtual light sources and real time shadows" Put simply, developers can now make it seem that certain elements are floating above the rest of the app with shadows reflecting where those elements are making Android L more intuitive than the flat Android KitKat. Developers will also have access to a new grid layout, a key that will allow apps and websites to be more easily scaled between smaller smartphone screens up to larger tablet, even desktop monitors, and will ensure that every Google product, from the smallest smartphones to tablets, chrome books and even Android enabled TVs feel like a complete ecosystem. This was previously a lot harder leading to apps on KitKat varying greatly between devices, with the same app on an Android 4.4 tablet looking different to that on a KitKat smartphone. Also built in are a whole new raft of animations available to all apps that make moving throughout your Android L device seem more seamless where KitKat often feels disjointed. As Google put it, no more teleportation - everything will seem much more interconnected. NotificationsAnother key area that has been looked at is the way notifications have been handled. Up until now the notifications have been locked to the notifications bar, with the last real update coming in Ice Cream Sandwich where users could swipe to dismiss updates. On current KitKat devices the only way you can access notifications is by pulling down the bar, allowing you to view and react. Instead, Android L brings these interactions far more front and centre, from less intrusion to new ways to see them. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Android/AndroidL/Android%20L%202/3-420-90.jpg This is most noticeable whilst receiving a call or a message whilst actively using your device; playing a game, for instance. When receiving a call in KitKat, users are greeted by the call screen, therefore taking you out of the app you are in, swallowing the entire screen and forcing you to accept or reject the call. Android L is far more subtle but is all the more useful for it, instead bringing down a 'Heads up' notification in much the same way as iOS. You can then dismiss or reply immediately without disruption. Notifications have also been given pride of place on the Android L lock screen in a bid to make receiving and responding more seamless. The effect that this will have on many Android KitKat users remains to be seen, as Android overlays such as Sense or TouchWiz and third party apps such as Qualcomm's Snapdragon Glance already offer this functionality. Those using Nexus devices and Google Play editions will find this a lot more useful though, and Google has also packed in functionality that has been omitted on many lock screen replacements. Android L will learn from your habits enabling it to prioritise the notifications that are most relevant to you, so avid tweeters will see Twitter notifications pushed to the fore, for example. SecurityGoogle believes 15% of Android users use a PIN or pattern lock on their device, and it wants to help cut down the time needed to open the phone. It claims that Android is being used regularly on over 1 billion phones, with average user checking their handset over 100 times a day so time saved unlocking can only help. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Android/AndroidL/Android%20L%202/10-420-90.jpg Android KitKat has many ways of protecting your device, with pattern unlocks, PINs and passwords, even Google's (all too often inaccurate) facial unlocking. Therefore a KitKat device will only unlock itself to those that know the correct password but this can be time consuming and often frustrating if you press or swipe incorrectly. In order to reduce the time spent entering PINs and pass codes, Android L comes with 'personal unlocking', a feature that "enables the device to determine if it's in a trusted environment, [like] the owner's hand or beside the owner on a table". This is worked out by pre-designated locations, any visible Bluetooth devices such as a smartwatch or even through your voice print. For those that have been looking over their shoulders at the ease of TouchID on the iPhone 5S or the fingerprint scanner on the Galaxy S5, this could prove a real blessing. Android L also comes packing universal data controls allowing users to better see what data is shared with who. Where on KitKat you had to go through each app manually to discover which ones had access to sensitive data such as your location, Android L brings these under one roof. This will give security conscious users the ability to choose who is getting access to things like location data in a way that they haven't before. SpeedWhilst Android comes with some nifty new features that make an immediate visual impact, Google has put a lot of work in behind the scenes to ensure that Android L is the fastest yet. If you're not into code-speak, here's the summary: it's built on a new platform that's way more efficient than before and runs much faster. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Android/AndroidL/Android%20L%202/9-420-90.jpg ART was made available in Android KitKat as an optional runtime but has now been made the standard for Android L and has been developed to work with ARM, x86 and MIPS platforms, running twice as fast as the Dalvik runtime that is found on previous Android iterations. The biggest benefit to users comes that this won't require apps to be readjusted in order to benefit, instead all apps will benefit from ART right away. ART is also more memory efficient than Dalvik meaning that apps that are running in the background will benefit from megabytes of saved data. ART is also 64-bit compatible, where Dalvik on Android KitKat and lower only worked with 32-bit chips, allowing Android L to benefit from the larger number registers, cross platform support and the increased RAM support that 64-bit architecture supports. Improved GraphicsAs mobile GPUs have evolved, so has the mobile gaming industry although the last real mobile graphics boost that Android saw was with 4.3 Jelly Bean with the addition of OpenGL:ES 3.0 support. At the time, EA Labels president, Frank Gibeau commented "In the near future, the next wave of tablets and phones will have nearly Xbox 360 or PS3 capabilities in terms of graphics." To a certain extent he was right as Android KitKat brought along some pretty impressive gaming capabilities; think Shadow Gun Dead Zone rather than Flappy Bird. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/events/Google%20IO%202014/Screen%20Shot%202014-06-25%20at%209.54.33%20AM-420-90.jpg Android L looks to build upon the work already done by Android Jelly Bean and KitKat bringing with it the sole task of closing the gap between mobile and desktop-class (DX11) graphics. This has been done by work with Nvidia, Qualcomm, ARM, and Imagination Technologies Google leading to the creation of the Android Extension Pack. Technically speaking this means a set of features that includes tessellation, geometry shaders, computer shaders and ASTC texture compression which will result in "more realistic environments, more realistic characters and vastly improved lighting". Overall Android L will bring far more powerful graphics capabilities to Android, exceeding what is currently available in even the most high-end Android KitKat games. Interlinked appsThe way Google search interacts with your Android L device has also been taken a look at. Searching before was a lot more hassle, with Android L looking to streamline the process. Using the KitKat search bar allows you to search the web and your device for certain details, although has always defaulted to bringing up the website address. Android L changes all of this with far greater app indexing making your Android L device more intuitive. http://mos.futurenet.com/techradar/art/mobile_phones/Android/AndroidL/Android%20L%202/8-420-90.jpg Android L allows users to search through apps directly from the search bar, whether it be a restaurant in the OpenTable app or a friend's page via Facebook The 'Recents' pane of Android L has also been reimagined to fit in with Google's new Material design, but also comes with far greater functionality. In Android KitKat it is possible to fire up into multitasking and flip through the recently accessed apps, but that is as far as it goes. With Android L, Google Chrome tabs are now listed within the multitasking pane, something that has previously been unavailable. This won't just be limited to Google Chrome though, as many Android L apps will also be able to open up multiple cards. This will all save time as you'll no longer have to load up an app like Chrome and then navigate through; instead you can go directly to where you need to be. Battery lifeFinally Android L is also helping OEMs by extending battery life through Project Volta. This brings two main power-saving elements to Android L: opening up the data and extending battery life through a low-drain mode. Android KitKat brought over Project Svelte, aimed at making the Android experience less memory intensive. This might have brought some battery improvements, but Project Volta has taken this to a whole new level. Where Project Svelte was designed to make Android KitKat as a whole run on less powerful devices, Volta allows developers to target individual apps. The creation of the Battery Historian tool allows them to measure battery drain corresponding to exactly what was going on the device. Developers can then rewrite code to counter that battery drain thereby making Android L apps more power efficient than on Android KitKat. This has been backed up by a new Job Scheduler API , allowing Android L to "make your application more efficient by allowing the platform to coalesce non-urgent network requests from multiple apps". By doing this, Android L can significantly reduce the amount of time that the Wi-Fi and cell radios are on compared to the Android KitKat equivalent, thereby reducing the amount of drain these have on the battery. Combined, Android L should make a battery last a lot longer than its older brother. The second battery saving feature that Google has brought across is a battery saving mode. This might seem familiar; this is something that is now fairly common, appearing on the likes of the Samsung Galaxy S5 or HTC One (M8). Nexus users will finally reap the benefits though, with the new mode allowing the CPU clock speed to be reduced, refresh rate to be lowered and data to be turned off. Google claims that this mode will extend the battery life of a Nexus 5 by about 90 minutes in a typical day http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3be7884e/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119747575/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3be7884e/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119747575/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3be7884e/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119747575/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3be7884e/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119747575/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3be7884e/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199119747575/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3be7884e/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/2c4DBfc9mSI
  18. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/Fitness_tech/FuelBand%20SE/nike-fuelband-android-app-470-75.jpgIn recent months Nike has made it abundantly clear that, more than ever, its loyalties lie with Team Apple as rumours continue to circulate that a collaboration in the wearables arena may be on the agenda. However, despite reportedly winding down its own hardware operation, the sportswear giant has at least decided to pay lip service to Android by finally launching a companion app for its FuelBand wristbands. The Nike+ FuelBand app, which is available now on devices running Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and above, arrives a two years after the FuelBand hardware went on sale with an accompanying iPhone app. Fuelband and Fuelband SE is "optimized" for Samsung's Galaxy S3, Galaxy S4 and Galaxy S5, as well as the HTC One, Nexus 5 and the Moto X. However, we found that the Nike FuelBand Android app works just the same in conjunction with unlisted devices such as the larger Samsung Galaxy Note 3 phablet and Nexus 7 tablet. Android gets goalsUsers will be able to use the app to view their NikeFuel ratings in real time, view the progress towards their goals on any given day, week or month and set move reminders using their device. The app allows specific activities to be tracked during the Nike+ Sessions functionality and compete with friends on a leaderboard. The launch for Android comes nearly eight months after Nike claimed it was "working on support" for Android. That prospect had seemed slim when reports emerged Nike had fired the majority of the FuelBand team back in April. Since then the company has been rumoured to be in cahoots with Apple over a purported iBand or iWatch. Running mates: What's going on with Nike and Apple?http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3b9a5144/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108543049/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b9a5144/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108543049/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b9a5144/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108543049/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b9a5144/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108543049/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b9a5144/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199108543049/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b9a5144/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/8ZTQc2fS2ks
  19. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/your_mobile_life/TV/4oD-470-75.jpgChannel 4 has updated its 4oD app for Android to offer programme streaming over 3G and 4G mobile networks. The update comes precisely two weeks after the broadcaster finally updated its iOS app to accommodate mobile data streaming of live and on demand content. Until very recently users of the application on both platforms were limited to streaming programming over Wi-Fi. Users were, and still are, available to download programmes from the last 30 days for offline viewing, but the addition of mobile data streaming will enable those spur-of-the-moment viewing decisions. ParityThe feature now gives 4oD parity with the BBC iPlayer and ITV player apps which also have the ability to stream over 3G and 4G The updated app, which can now be downloaded from the Google Play store, also brings access to 4Shorts, offering hundreds of classic clips from the archives along with a host of original shorts. Users are, of course, advised to use Wi-Fi whenever possible so as not to drain their data allowance. Streaming on the go? Perhaps it's time for a Netflix subscriptionhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3b99c94e/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119797937/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b99c94e/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119797937/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b99c94e/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119797937/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b99c94e/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119797937/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b99c94e/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199119797937/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b99c94e/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/o1qyNu3zFC4
  20. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/mobile_phones/SwiftKey/SwiftKey-470-75.jpgSwiftKey has been a firm favourite at TechRadar for some time now, and after learning it will bring its keyboard to iPhone and iPad via iOS 8, there's more good news. From today, SwiftKey will be completely free to download on Android via Google Play, as the firm looks to expand its reach to developing nations. While you could previously get your thumbs of a free version of the keyboard, it was merely a one month trial. The company's switch in its business model means you can now enjoy all the features of SwiftKey for free. Already paid?For those of you, like us, who shelled out $3.99/£2.99 to download the full version, SwiftKey intends on keeping you sweet by offering a free "Premier Pack" of 10 themes. It's these in-app purchases - which include new themes and other content - where SwiftKey will plan to generate its revenue going forward, but you'll get all the core features without ever having to hand over a cent. The update also brings support for over 800 emojis, a new prediction feature which learns which emojis you use in particular situations, the option of adding a line of numbers above the letter keys, and general improvements to the word prediction engine, autocorrect and gesture typing (aka SwiftKey Flow). Apple has also revamped its own keyboard in iOS 8http://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3b615e45/sc/15/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108298231/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b615e45/sc/15/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108298231/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b615e45/sc/15/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108298231/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b615e45/sc/15/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108298231/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b615e45/sc/15/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199108298231/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b615e45/sc/15/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/rHyT6tWRYeQ
  21. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/internet/Netflix/Netflix_post_play_OITNB-470-75.jpgNetflix has rolled out its post-play experience for Android smartphones and tablets. The feature, which gives users the opportunity to select the next episode it, or to auto-play if they choose to press nothing, has been available on many other platforms, like iOS, PS3 and the web for some time. For TV shows it queues up the next episode but for movies (tablets only) it offers three recommendations for what you might want to watch next, the company revealed on its blog. Users will require Android 4.0 or higher and the update is available from the Google Play Store as of right now. OITNB is backThe bump comes as may users will be settling in to binge watch the new season of Netflix Original series Orange is the New Black, which arrived on Friday. If you're an Android phone or tablet owner, you only need one click to breeze through the entire thing, notwithstanding the odd pause for a toilet break here and there. The Netflix Effect: how binge watching is changing TVhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3b452a5a/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119450825/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b452a5a/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119450825/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b452a5a/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119450825/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b452a5a/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119450825/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b452a5a/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199119450825/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b452a5a/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/QOvTQgLMxfs
  22. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/software/Bump/bump-470-75.jpgGoogle is working on a new connectivity feature for Android that would allow users to share and receive information based on their proximity to other devices. According to information obtained by Android Police, the new toolset will automatically connect users in order to share contact information, receive offers from in store beacons or interact with in-home tech. "Nearby lets you connect, share, and do more with people, places, and things near you," Google writes on the on-boarding page for the feature. That, according to the site will also allow users to set a reminder on their phones for next time they happen to meet a particular person, or go to a particular store. Listening inHowever, as neat as the feature sounds, it wouldn't be Google without some privacy concerns. Once Nearby is turned on users are giving their permission for their phone's microphone to be enabled in order to 'listen' for other devices, which will apparently emit sounds inaudible to the human ear. It also grants permission to turn on the device's Wi-Fi automatically and shares the user's location history. With continuing fears over phone tapping and government snooping, many users may be unwilling to sign up for a service that's always listening in on whatever they're doing, even if it is to find other devices. "When Nearby is turned on for your account, Google can periodically turn on the mic, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and similar features on all your current and future devices. Google+ and other Google services need this access to help you connect, share, and more," the company writes. The site reports this feature, which in many ways is a progression of the Bump app Google purchased in late 2013, may be announced at Google I/O later this month. Big Data deconstructed: How it's keeping us fit and entertainedhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3b44caee/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108174897/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b44caee/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108174897/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b44caee/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108174897/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b44caee/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108174897/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b44caee/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199108174897/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b44caee/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/sHf9KKpna7M
  23. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/TRBC/officeforipad1-470-75.jpgMicrosoft may be preparing to throw another Office-based curve ball by launching the touch-centric version of its productivity suite on Google Android devices before it lands on Windows 8. According to the well-connected Mary Jo-Foley's of Zdnet's sources, the Android OS is next in Microsoft's sights for Word, Excel and Powerpoint touch, following the roll-out on iPad earlier this year. Microsoft prioritised the iOS version in order to capitalise on its greater-than-Windows market share (and probably just to shut people up), so adopting Android next would represent a similar strategic manoeuvre. The software giant has made it clear in recent months that it'll no longer discriminate against rival platforms and will instead seek to have its products and services available on as many platforms as possible. Conceding defeat or the smart move?The launch of Office touch for Windows had been rumoured for the autumn of 2014, but it now appears Microsoft may wait until early 2015 before pushing out the next generation suite on for its own operating system. Meanwhile, the Android version will arrive before the end of 2014, according to Foley's sources. Would you agree with Microsoft if it decided to go Android-first with Office touch? Or would it be a concession of defeat in its quest to conquer the mobile market? Let us know your thoughts below. Opinion: Why Office for iPad makes sense for Nadella's Microsofthttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3b21dd4d/sc/5/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108028017/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b21dd4d/sc/5/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108028017/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b21dd4d/sc/5/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108028017/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b21dd4d/sc/5/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199108028017/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b21dd4d/sc/5/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199108028017/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b21dd4d/sc/5/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/NZPNBa4hrTo
  24. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/mobile_phones/Google/nexus5/Nexus%205%20Review/nexus-5-review-54-470-75.jpgApple isn't the only one dropping in some fresh new software for mobile devices. T-Mobile is pushing out Android KitKat 4.4.3 to the Nexus 7, Nexus 5 and Nexus 4 that will land as an over-the-air update today. The next version of Android KitKat brings a few security enhancements but isn't a major boost. The update could fix some of KitKat's current buggy annoyances including devices rebooting unintentionally as well as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity issues. Importantly for Nexus 5 handsets, 4.4.3 might finally fix the blue camera tint problem that's plagued Google's flagship smartphone for so long. Coming down the pipeWhile T-Mo has only advertised a few things coming with the 4.4.3 update, a few weeks prior a rumored leak suggested it might sport a revamped dialer. A leaked screenshot suggested Android's built-in phone app would feature a modernized card UI over its old list of contacts. Once 4.4.3 comes, we can expect the newest version of Android will start making their way to the latest crop of smartphones including the HTC One (M8). The Samsung Galaxy S5 is due for its own Android updates, toohttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3b18db5b/sc/15/mf.gifhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/h0JEr72dRtk
  25. http://cdn.mos.techradar.com/art/other/Onetimers/Google%20Now%20Car%20Parking-470-75.jpgGoogle is reportedly working on expanding its Android voice search functionality with an eyes-free interface, allowing drivers to focus on the road while interacting with their phones. The initiative, apparently codenamed KITT after the artificially intelligent talking car from Knight Rider, would allow users to utter 'OK Google' to search for the weather, for news, or for directions. The feature would be an expansion of the feature offered by the Google-made Moto X, offering results in spoken form so as not to distract the user from the task at hand. According to AndroidPolice, which uncovered the plans, users would 'take turns' with the phone as it walked them through tasks like searching the web, making calls, sending texts and more. Safety firstWhen Google isn't unable to provide the information in a way the does not require the user to look at the screen, it will save the information until users can pull over and read it safely, the report claimed. The idea, naturally, is to make Android safer to use behind the wheel, with users able to access the 'OK Google' voice search feature from anywhere within the phone. With Google I/O just a few weeks away, what price we'll see this feature unveiled at Google's annual expo? Apple CarPlay: Everything you need to know about iOS in the Carhttp://rss.feedsportal.com/c/669/f/415085/s/3b0d99b1/sc/4/mf.gif http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119229768/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b0d99b1/sc/4/rc/1/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119229768/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b0d99b1/sc/4/rc/2/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119229768/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b0d99b1/sc/4/rc/3/rc.img http://da.feedsportal.com/r/199119229768/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b0d99b1/sc/4/a2.imghttp://pi.feedsportal.com/r/199119229768/u/49/f/415085/c/669/s/3b0d99b1/sc/4/a2t.imghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techradar/software-news/~4/GnXZv6YxN5g
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