Posts Tagged Apps

Google Play Store offering discounts on paid apps as part of its Spring sale

Play Store Promo

As part of Google’s new Spring promotion on the Play Store, several paid apps are being offered with massive discounts starting today. Since some apps are not available everywhere, you might not be able to see them all in your location, so keep that in mind. Below are the apps which are selling for a discounted price now.

  • The Room Two ($2.99)
  • Anomaly 2 ($4.99)
  • AaaaaAAaaaaa ($1)
  • Clash Of The Puppets hack n slash ($1)
  • The Dark Knight Rises ($0.99)
  • Sprinkle Islands ($1)
  • TowerMadness 2 ($1)
  • Riptide GP2 ($1.99)
  • 10000000 ($1.10)
  • Ticket to Ride ($1.99)
  • Bag It! ($1)
  • Out There ($1.99)
  • Radiohammer ($2.99)
  • Broken Sword : Director’s Cut ($1.49)
  • NBA 2K14 ($2.99)
  • Shadowrun Returns ($3.99)

Most of these titles are from major developer houses, so it’s good to know that Google has made them slightly lighter on our wallets. There’s no word on how long this promotion will last, but it seems like the pricing will remain constant for a while now as this is a Spring promo. Hit the link below for more information on what games are available for a discounted price in your region.

Source: Google Play Store

Via: Cult of Android

The post Google Play Store offering discounts on paid apps as part of its Spring sale appeared first on The Droid Guy.

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According to study, Samsung’s apps are mostly unloved

app_usage_samsung

Samsung has put a lot of effort into its apps of late, but a recent study shows that its efforts are mostly for nothing. The company clearly still has a long way to go.

According to the study, users spend a very little amount of time on Samsung’s apps. These apps include services like ChatON, which is Samsung’s answer to WhatsApp. In fact, the report shows that users of the Galaxy S3 and S4 spent an average of 6 seconds per month on ChatON, which is compared to over 11 hours on Facebook per month and 2 hours per month on Instagram.

The study tracked over 250 million users of the two devices in the US and their app use last month. Users spent an average of 7 minutes on all of Samsungs apps.

It will be important for Samsung to improve this because of growing competition in the mobile market, making anything that sets Samsung apart important.

Source: Wall Street Journal

Come comment on this article: According to study, Samsung’s apps are mostly unloved

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10 hidden features of the Galaxy S 5 that you need to know

Samsung_Galaxy_S_5_Back_Camera_Samsung_Logo_01

It can be hard to keep track of all the things that the Galaxy S 5 can do. There are so many obvious ones, but here are 10 things you might not know your Galaxy S 5 can do, as provided by Samsung.

1. Write on your Galaxy S 5 with a pencil

You can increase the sensitivity of the Galaxy S 5′s display by heading into Settings/Display and tapping on “Increase touch sensitivity.” Now you will be able to tap, swipe, or write on the display using a pencil. You can even use a gloved hand or your fingernail. Quick tip: You can also access Touch Sensitivity from within the 22 quick menu icons. Just pull down the status bar using two fingers to see your quick menu icons and toggle “Touch Sensitivity.”

Samsung_Galaxy_S_5_Touch_Sensitivity

2. Find similar music tracks by tilting your Galaxy S 5

While listening to the stock music player, put your GS5 into landscape mode. You will then see suggestions for similar tracks stored on your phone. Obviously, the more songs you have on your device, the more recommendations you will get.

Samsung_Galaxy_S_5_Suggested_Songs_Via_Music_Player

3. Use Toolbox to bookmark your favorite apps

The Toolbox is just a glorified folder of your favorite apps, but it’s actually a floating widget. To place it on your screen, just swipe down the notification panel with two fingers and tap “Toolbox.” You will see a white circle shaped icon with three dots appear on your current home screen. You can tap and hold to move it wherever you want, but it will be visible from all your home screens and whatever apps you run (excluding the camera).

Just tap on the circle to see your favorite apps. To customize what apps appear in it, tap and hold, then drag it to the top left “Edit” button. You can then check what apps you want to appear in it. If you want to remove it altogether, just tap and hold, then drag it to the “Remove” button at the top right.

Samsung_Galaxy_S_5_Toolbox_02

4. Protect things with Privacy Mode

Need to hide certain pictures, documents, text messages, videos, voicemails, etc. from prying eyes? Samsung has you covered with Privacy Mode. Assuming you never used Privacy Mode, open your Settings and scroll down to Personalization. Select “Private Mode.” You will then be given the opportunity to select what type of security (Pattern, PIN, Fingerprint, or Password) you want to use to make your private files visible.

Now you can move files to private by hitting the menu key, and selecting “Move to Private.” Note: for photos, this has to be done in thumbnail view. Once you have selected all your files to be private, go back to Settings/Personalization/Privacy Mode and turn it off. Now those files won’t be visible to anyone. If you want to see them again, go back to Private Mode and turn it on. You will of course, need to enter your PIN, password, pattern, or fingerprint to turn it on.

5. Kids Mode

If you have children, no doubt they will play with your phone from time to time. The Galaxy S 5 features a new Kids Mode that is fun and safe for all children. To get started, long press on any of your home screens, select Widgets, and find “Kids Mode.” Long press on it and place it anywhere on your home screen. Now tap on it, and it will install the application (63.1 MB).

Now open the app and set your PIN code followed by your child’s name and what apps you want to be a part of it. Installing new apps creates a gift box so you can “give your child a gift” by installing apps they wanted. If you’re looking for new kid-friendly apps, you can go to “Parental Control” at the bottom right of your screen, then tap the Menu at the upper left, followed by “Kids Store” to find more apps.

Limiting your child’s play is also pretty easy. Just tap “Parental Control,” followed by the Menu, then “Daily playtime limit” to set the daily time limit.

Samsung_Galaxy_S_5_Kids_Mode

6. Open the Camera app from the lock screen

Head into Settings and scroll down to Sound and Display. Select “Lock Screen” and then check “Camera Shortcut.” A camera icon will now appear at the bottom right of your Lock Screen. Just swipe it up to open the Camera app so you can grab that picture quickly. It will even bypass your security, but as soon as you leave the Camera application, you will need to enter your credentials or fingerprint in order to proceed.

7. Try these new camera features

Virtual Tour Mode

Want to give someone a virtual tour of a restaurant, your house, or any other location? Virtual Shot will do just that. Just follow the guided arrows that point forward, left, or right. You will then get a moving picture like a gif image.

Samsung_Galaxy_S_5_Virtual_Tour_Mode

Shot and More

With Shot and More you can edit pictures and apply various effects immediately after taking your shots. You will be able to choose the best photo from a set of burst shots, best face, drama shot, eraser, and more.

Samsung_Galaxy_S_5_Shot_and_More

8.  Set Priority Senders in the Messaging app

You may have 1,000 contacts on your phone, but I bet you regularly text only a handful of them right? Well that is where Priority Senders comes in. Just open the Messaging app and select “Add Priority Senders.” You can add your favorite contacts, and they will be displayed along the top for easy access. Just tap on any one of the contact icons for sending and reading messages.

Samsung_Galaxy_S_5_Priority_Contacts

 9. Get caller information while you are still on the phone.

Need to get caller information while you are in the middle of a call.  To turn this feature on, head into your Settings, and scroll down to Applications. Select “Call,” then check “Show caller information.”

Samsung_Galaxy_S_5_Caller_Information

10. Enable Call Notification Pop-Ups 

Do you find it annoying that when you receive a call, whatever application you were using is stopped for the incoming call screen? With the Galaxy S 5, you can enable Call Notification Pop-Ups, which will still allow you to finish that email if you don’t want to answer the call.

Go to Settings, then scroll down to Applications. Select “Call” and make sure to select “Call notification pop-ups.” From now on when a call comes in, you will get a much smaller pop-up over your currently opened app.

Samsung_Galaxy_S_5_Call_Notification

source: Samsung Tomorrow

Come comment on this article: 10 hidden features of the Galaxy S 5 that you need to know

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Happy Earth Day! Five ways to go paperless with Android

Earth Day is here, and it has us thinking: are we doing enough for our environment? There are lots of really simple things we can do, and one of them is to go as paperless as possible. By eliminating or reducing the amount of paper and plastic we produce or are responsible for, we can have a positive impact on our environment. Below are some tips to help you go paperless, using your Android device as a backbone.

Coupons!

Clipping coupons is a chore, and honestly kind of annoying. Besides, those coupon queens you see on HGTV who save a ton of cash on 75 bars of deodorant go through enough paper for all of us! One easy way to save cash is to use an app to save money, like Target’s Cartwheel app. Walgreens also has a similarly good app, and they’re much more paper-reliant than Target is. Various grocery stores are also getting in on apps over paper for coupons, so check with oyur local store to see if they have an app for you.

When possible, you should also find a coupon online, or choose to simply open an email to have a cashier scan your code. Often times, it’s just not necessary to print out a coupon and take it in. There are various coupon apps in the Play Store as well, so give them a shot and cut down on paper!

Target Cartwheel AC

Put an end to bills

Whenever possible, you should opt out of paper billing. Credit card companies often let you receive email notifications, ending the monthly statement sent to you in the mail. You can even schedule payments in Google calendar, putting an end to the “uhh, did I pay my credit card?” internal dialogue. They may still hassle you via email, but it’s much better than getting an envelope. Your credit card company likely has an Android app, too, where you can pay bills and manage your account.

Don’t forget about books and magazines

Music and movies are available for streaming, but so are magazines and books. There are various apps like Kindle or Play Newsstand that make it really simple to go digital. Amazon even has a program where they give you a digital copy of a book you once bought, often free or for a nominal fee. When you factor in magazine subscriptions, your monthly paper intake can get quite cumbersome. We suggest you check out eReading apps to see if one suits your needs.

Play Magazines Paperless AC

Paper Karma

This app is a sleeper, but really fun and useful. In your mailbox, you likely get one or two pieces of good mail (which you’re going to receive electronically from now on, right?!) mixed with a ton of junk. You’re not sure where it came from, or why you get it — but you do. Rather than simply sigh and toss it in the recycling bin, why not cut it off at the source?

Paper Karma lets you scan your junk mail into their system, which then takes care of unsubscribing you. Rather than track down some website for the offending mail (if one exists) and creating a profile just to opt out of mail, you can just scan it. Over time, your junk mail will start to reduce, and your mailbox once again becomes useful.

Paperless AC

Notes can be digital, too

You just want to remember to grab milk at the store, so you scribble it down on a piece of paper and head out the door. Later on, you happen to look at the paper, but it’s too late — you’re nowhere near a store! If that sounds like you, stop wasting paper and go digital!

Apps like Keep or Any.Do can make your reminders really seamless and easy. For simpler tasks like reminding yourself to get that milk, Google Now is a great choice, and could be easier to use for simple tasks. We’ve previously gone over note taking apps, so give our article a read-through to decide which is best for you.

Google Now Paperless AC

Bonus tip!

If you do all the things noted above, your paper intake and use will be reduced greatly. If you use cloud storage for your files (it doesn’t have to be just for pics, you know), you’re only adding to all the good you’re doing.

Keeping files stored in cloud storage can act like a file folder you might keep at home, except it takes up no room and won’t get damaged. You can also access your files anywhere, and store just about any type of file. Even if you went paperless with credit card statements, you can always save a PDF to Drive or Dropbox. If someone ends up sending you a bill via snail mail, scan it and save it to the cloud, then recycle the statement. By then, you’re using almost zero paper at all.

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Trustlook Releases Android Antivirus Application With Heartbleed Protection

If you’ve been following the news lately then you already know that the biggest concern right now regarding online security is the Heartbleed bug. This is a serious vulnerability that affects the open-source OpenSSL cryptography library that is widely used today. This security flaw allows cybercriminals to access protected information which they can use for monetary gains.

HeartBleed Security Scanner

While the Heartbleed bug is commonly known to affect the server side by compromising the username and password of individuals it too can affect Android apps. These affected apps communicate with Heartbleed affected URLs which means that all communications to those URLs can possibly be compromised.

Trustlook, a company that deals with mobile security solutions, immediately studied the Heartbleed bug and published its scanning result that showed that there are apps currently available at the Google Play Store that are affected by the bug. In less than two days after the release of the results the company was able to release a security app called the HeartBleed Security Scanner which scans for any installed app on a device that may be affected by the bug.

The app is free to download and basically performs these functions

  • Scan Heartbleed Risk for Phone and Tablet
  • Detect Install application for Heartbleed Vulnerability
  • Check external website has Heartbleed Risk

The company announced that “According to our scanning, we found 24 apps have accessed Heartbleed impacted URLs, which means all the data that app communicated with server are in danger of being compromised by hackers. We already marked those apps as “High Risk” in Trustlook Antivirus.”

What’s the best thing to do regarding this security issue? First of all don’t panic. While initial estimates place the number of servers worldwide affected by this bug at 60 percent the latest estimates place this at lower than 17.5 percent. This might still be a huge number of servers but its way lower than the initial estimate.

Since this is a security issue everyone who has an online account should be concerned about it. The solution to this is to simply change your passwords. While most of the major services such as Google and Yahoo have confirmed that they have already plugged the hole it is still best to change your passwords.

When dealing with passwords always make it as complicated as possible. Try to choose ne with at least 10 characters using upper and lower case characters in addition to numbers.

If you have a device running on at least Android 2.3 and are concerned about this security risk then it’s best to install this security app which can then be used to scan your device.

via marketwired

The post Trustlook Releases Android Antivirus Application With Heartbleed Protection appeared first on The Droid Guy.

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Apps of the Week: Alpha Zero, Bloom.fm, Zoodles and more!

Another wonderful roundup of apps from the writers at Android Central

Another week is in the books, and that means it’s time for the latest edition of our Apps of the Week post. We round up a single app picked by each of the writers here at Android Central and put them on display every Saturday afternoon. The apps we pick out never have to follow a theme or a certain purpose — all that matters here is that we use the app and want to tell more people about the reasons why.

This week we have another great roundup of apps, including a new game, another music service and a great way to repurpose an old Android device for your kids. Read along with us and see how this week’s picks stack up.



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DL Daily Driver: The Android Phones We’re Using Today

DL Daily Driver:  The Android Phones We’re Using Today

In this business, we change phones a lot. From one month to the next, we could go through three phones or we may be waiting for the next wave, which means we’re locked into a single personal favorite for an extended amount of time. Since we are always testing the next thing, readers often wonder what’s in our pocket at the moment. In the past, you’d have to guess based on photos we feature in posts or by hearing us talk about them on the DL Show. And that’s why this post has been born.

This is our DL Daily Driver list. It’s a list of the phones we’re using at the moment, along with the launcher we prefer, 5 apps we can’t live without, and a quick note or two on why this phone is along for the ride (even if temporarily).

We will also update this post regularly, assuming we continue to change phones regularly. We’ll even toss a shortcut to the post in our sidebar on the main page, so that you can quickly find it.


Kellen

Current phone:  Samsung Galaxy S5 (Verizon)

Launcher:  TouchWiz, only because I keep it real when reviewing.

5 must-have apps:  Instagram, theScore, Plex, Pushbullet, Threes.

Why this phone:  It’s review time, so the Galaxy S5 is my daily driver. That will change the minute we’re done with the review, though, as I cannot wait to get back to the Nexus 5. That’s not to say that the Galaxy S5 is bad – has an amazing display, solid camera, updated TouchWiz that isn’t terrible – but it’s just not the phone for me.


Tim

Current phone:  Samsung Galaxy S5 (AT&T)

Launcher:  TouchWiz, soon to be Nova.

5 must-have apps:  Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, Muzei, Timely.

Why this phone:  I try and stay up to date with the newest Android devices, testing the latest and greatest to hit the market. For now, I am using the Galaxy S5 from Samsung. I like the size of the device, the display, and the camera, but there are a few software things that have been grinding my gears. Battery life could also use some help. At the end of the day, I’m just waiting for Motorola and LG’s new flagship devices.


Eric

Current phone:  Moto X (Verizon)

Launcher:  Nova Launcher

5 must-have apps:  Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Cerberus, Mailbox.

Why this phone:  I upgraded to the Moto X the week that it was launched. The best parts about the phone are the software that Motorola put into it. I use Active Display, Touchless Control and other apps on a daily basis. Battery life is awesome, but the camera is pretty poor. I have also noticed the dual-core processor lagging in simple tasks whenever the battery is low. Other than that, great phone.


Kyle

Current phone:  LG G2 (Verizon)

Launcher:  Google Now Launcher

5 must-have apps:  Pushbullet, Keep, Office Mobile, Mint, Twitter.

Why this phone:  I traded in my Galaxy S4 for an LG G2 last month, and it feels like a huge step up. It’s minimalistic (tiny bezel, no physical home button), feels solid in the hand (it doesn’t creak like the GS4 did), takes outstanding photographs, and has excellent battery life. Perhaps the one thing I miss is Samsung’s excellent OLED technology – the brightness and viewing angles of the G2′s panel are definitely inferior – but I otherwise can’t complain.


Rithvik

Current phone:  Sony Xperia Z1

Launcher:  Nova Launcher

5 must-have apps:  AcDisplay, Pocket, Pushbullet, QuizUp, Timely.

Why this phone:  The main reasons I have this phone are because of the build quality, fairly fast updates, not entirely trashy skin, and the fact that the bootloader is unlockable through Sony (at least, on my version). I also love the camera quality, but the display’s viewing angles are not the greatest.


Last updated April 18, 2014.

DL Daily Driver: The Android Phones We’re Using Today is a post from: Droid Life

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Amazon holding Appstore Easter egg hunt, offering discounts and Coin rewards on selected apps

Amazon is holding a digital Easter egg hunt in its Appstore, offering discounts and rewards on several apps through tomorrow. Several popular games and apps are featured in the hunt, including NBA Jam, Candy Crush Saga, and Frozen Free Fall.



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Phan Favs: The best weather app for Android [RESULTS]

phan fav 1 weather

Exactly one week ago we posted the first part of a new feature called Phan Favs. This feature is all about asking you, the readers, about your favorite apps and games. To start things out we asked you about your favorite weather apps for Android. A lot of you came out and showed your support for your favorite apps. We received well over 250 votes spread out across dozens of apps. One app came out on top as the clear winner. Here are your top picks for best weather apps.

1. 1Weather

1weather

It’s very fitting that the app with “1″ in its name is the #1 pick. 1Weather claims to be the “most loved weather app on Google Play,” and that certainly showed in your voting. This app is the perfect combination of design and data. Most weather apps sacrifice to have just one or the other, but 1Weather provides powerful information in a beautiful package. Another plus for 1Weather is tablet support, live weather forecasts and backgrounds, and so much more. 1Weather is available for free from Google Play.

2. WeatherBug

wetaherbug

Coming in at #2 is an app that has been around for a long time, but keeps on kicking. WeatherBug has a focus on helping you “Know Before.” With this app you can access the world’s largest network of weather and lightning sensors for the most accurate forecasts, and the fastest alerts. “Spark Alerts” can even turn your phone into a lightning detector. Download WeatherBug and always know when the weather is about to turn bad. It’s available for free from Google Play.

3. Yahoo Weather

yahoo

One of the newest entries you selected is Yahoo Weather. This is one of the prettiest weather apps you’ll ever find. It’s minimal in design with simple data and full screen photos. It may seem overly simple, but there is hardcore data in this app too. You get access to radar maps, wind and pressure, daily, hourly, and weekly forecasts, and much  more. If you’re looking for a stylish weather app this is an excellent choice. It’s available for free from Google Play.

4. Google Now

google now

Why download a weather app when your phone can tell you the forecast right out of the box? That’s what a lot of you said with your choice of Google Now. This feature comes in the Google Search app that is compatible with most of the newer Android devices. It will tell you the weather of your current location with a handy card and can be ever-present in your notification shade. Google Now can also recite the weather back to you if you ask. Download Google Search for free from the Play Store.

5. Weather Underground

weatunder

The last app in our Top 5 is Weather Underground. This app is described as “community powered weather.” What does that mean? On top of the regular weather services and airports, this app uses 3,000+ personal weather stations report the most localized weather conditions. That data powers radar maps, forecasts, hazards reports, and so much more. If you like helping to crowd source data this is a great weather app to use. Like all the other apps on this list, it’s available for free from Google Play.

image

The Top 10 selections can be seen in the chart above. Thanks to everyone who helped vote to make this list. Next week we will be back with another Phan Favs. Do you like the winners of this week? Did your favorite app make the Top 5? Let us know in the comments if you agree with your fellow readers!

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Apps of the Week: Aerena Clash of Champions, Google Authenticator, Aviary and more!

The best apps we have installed and are excited about this week

The weekend is a leisurely time where we all pull out our phones or tablets and find a new app or two to keep us entertained or productive. For that reason, we run an Apps of the Week column every Saturday afternoon to let everyone know what the writers here at Android Central are installing on our own devices. We highlight our favorite games, tools, news readers and more every week, hoping that they’ll be useful to you as well.

Read along with us and see our picks this week — you may find an app or two that will find a place on your phone or tablet as well.



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Google will protect your phone by looking for sketchy apps you’ve already installed

Got an Android device with access to Google’s Play Store? Congratulations: It’s about to become even more resistant to malware, and you’ll barely have to lift a finger. You see, for around two years now, the folks in Mountain View have been able to throw up red flags when users try to install apps of questionable provenance on their devices. Now they’re taking it a step further — Google will soon be able to check up on your apps after you’ve already installed them.

Why? Well, it’s possible that you downloaded some sketchy apps before Google’s verification feature went live in 2012. A bad app that previously managed to fly under the radar could also be rooted out as Google continues to learn more about mobile malware. Those situations may seem a mite outlandish, and Android Security Engineer Rich Cannings admits that most people won’t ever see one of those notifications. Still, there’s no denying this is a solid tool to have in the ol’ arsenal, and ComputerWorld previously reported that it’ll come in the form of an update to Google’s Play Services; so devices running Android versions as old as 2.3 should get that added security without a headache.

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Source: Official Android Blog

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Android update coming with regular malware scans

A new Android update is rolling out that will add a bit more security when it comes to apps that may harm your device. The update from Google intends to make sure that apps installed on your device — from Google Play or elsewhere — are playing nice and “behaving in a safe manner”. Currently the system scans applications at the time you install them, but now it will continuously check all the apps on your device, even after they’ve been installed.



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Google Is Now Rolling Out Constant On-Device Scanning For Verify Apps Feature

nexusae0_shield_thumbGoogle’s previously announced enhancement to the Verify Apps framework is rolling out to users now, according to the official Android blog. Your device already has the standard Verify Apps system built-in that scans at the time of installation, but the new version will be watching all the time for suspicious activity.

Screenshot 2014-04-09 at 17.15.06

Verify Apps compares each app you install with known malware signatures, but there’s always a possibility you are downloading a form of malware that hasn’t been identified yet.

Done With This Post? You Might Also Like These:

Google Is Now Rolling Out Constant On-Device Scanning For Verify Apps Feature was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Phan Favs: What is the best weather app?

PhanFavsweather

We have several recurring features on this site where we tell you what the best apps, games, phones, or tablets happen to be. Of course these picks are largely based on our own opinions. Many times you, the readers, disagree with us. That is one of the great things about Android. It’s very personal. You all have your favorite apps and games, so it’s time we ask you.

Phan Favs gives you, the readers, the chance to tell us which apps and games are the best. It’s time for some good old-fashioned crowd sourcing to find out what apps Android users are really using. For our first vote we will be talking about WEATHER APPS. Checking the weather is one of the most basic functions of a smartphone. There are probably thousands of apps available for this specific task. We want to know which ones you are using.

How It Works

It’s very simple. Leave a comment below with the name of your favorite weather app. DON’T leave a comment with the name of an app that has already been mentioned. If your favorite app has been mentioned already just upvote it. Next week we will put the top 5 (and a few honorable mentions) into a list.

Spread the news! Let other Android users know about this! More people means more data, and more data means more accurate results. Click right here to tweet about it. Thanks for playing along!

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HTC updates BlinkFeed and Gallery apps for the HTC One (M8)

BlinkFeed HTC

HTC recently made a few of its native Sense 6.0 apps available on the Play Store so as to make it easier to update them in the future. This move is already reaping great benefits as the manufacturer has now rolled out updates to its BlinkFeed and Gallery applications with some new changes.

The updates don’t bring any drastic upgrades, but are certainly welcome since these are the core Sense 6.0 apps. The BlinkFeed update changelog shows that it now enables for faster scrolling and also brings the ability to add more content.

The Gallery app comes with a new feature called Foregrounder which is a focusing effect allowing users to tap anywhere in the screen to make changes to a particular image. These are very minor features, but without the help of Play Store apps, HTC would have had to wait for a full blown firmware update to bring in these changes. So with that in mind, this is a very welcome change by HTC.

Source: BlinkFeed, Gallery

Via: Android Police

The post HTC updates BlinkFeed and Gallery apps for the HTC One (M8) appeared first on The Droid Guy.

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6 high-priced Android apps worth your hard-earned money

android money

Let’s be honest, when it comes to buying apps we can all be a bit stingy with our cash. Most of us have no problem shelling out $200 for the latest Samsung device, but dropping a couple of bucks on some app seems so much more difficult. It’s a very strange situation. Through the years most people have decided that any app that costs over $1.99 is “expensive.” We really need to get over this mentality.

Most people have no problem spending a few bucks on a Big Mac that will keep them satisfied for a couple of hours. Why is it so hard to buy $5 app that you will use every day of your life? Not to mention the money you spend on apps is supporting hard-working developers. We think there are plenty of apps out there that are worthy of your hard-earned cash. Here are 5 “high” priced apps and 1 cheapy for your consideration.

Link Bubble – $4.99

link bubble

Link Bubble is a completely new way to browse the web on your Android device. When you click on a link the webpage begins to load in the background, allowing you to continue using the app you are in. Once the page is loaded it pops up on top of the current app. You never have to leave the app you are using or wait for pages to load. $5 may seem a bit steep, but when you consider how many times you open links it’s well worth it.

Plex – $4.99

plex

If you know anyone that uses Plex they have probably already told you how great it is. This service can be easily described by their tagline: “One window into all your personal media. No matter where you are.” Upload all of your media to the Plex server and it can be accessed anywhere you can download the app. Photos can be automatically uploaded, and videos are displayed with beautiful movie posters. Plex even works with Chromecast. The $5 will give you access to all of this on your phone or tablet.

Safe In Cloud – $4.99

safe_in_cloud_phone

If you use the same password on every site, or let browsers remember your login info, you are at risk of getting hacked. Having a unique login and password for every site can be incredibly difficult to remember. Safe In Cloud is a password management system. that helps you keep track of it all. You can sync your passwords to Google Drive, Dropbox, or OneDrive. The $5 will get you the Android app, plus the Chrome and Firefox extension for free. Privacy is nothing to skimp out on.

Pushover – $4.99

pushover

We all gets tons of notifications, but rarely about the things that should really be notifying us. Pushover can make notifications work for you. Want to know when your Fitbit battery is low? When a completely-legal-in-every-way torrent finishes downloading? An eBay item changes price? With Pushover you can get notifications for all of these things, and many more. Dozens of apps, services, and things can be configured to work with Pushover. For $5 you will be notified of anything and everything you can imagine.

ROM Manager – $5.99

ROM_Manager

If you are a frequent user of custom ROMs you have probably used the free version of ROM Manager at some time. This incredibly useful app comes pre-installed with some ROMs. The premium version adds a few features that are very important for hardcore ROM users. You can download incremental update zips to save on data, get access to premium ROMs, and receive notifications for when your ROM is updated. If you’ve ever hassled with ROMs this is an easy $6 to spend.

MarkAsRead – $1.21

markasread

Our cheapy pick is a new app that solves a small but annoying problem. Gmail’s current notifications let you archive and reply to emails directly from the notification. Unfortunately there is no way to mark an email as “read” from there. MarkAsRead replaces the stock Gmail notification with an almost identical one, except now there is a “read” button. No more seeing new emails twice. For just $1.21 this will make your life easier.

Those are some of the apps we think are worth the price tag, but what about you? What apps do you consider to be good enough to buy? Let us know in the comments below!

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Apps of the Week: War Agent, LastPass, Snapseed and more!

Kicking off another month of great app picks

It’s the first Saturday of the month, and that means it’s time to kick off another great set of Apps of the Week columns. Just as you know, we bring together an app pick from each of the Android Central writers and put them on display together as a recommendation of what we’re currently using. They may not be new, flashy or top-of-the-line apps, but we think it says something when we consistently use them, so we want to show them off.

Read along with us through this week’s picks and see how they stack up — you may just find an app or two that fit your own uses as well.

    



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The top 5 best music player apps for Android

Get the best music experience on your Android phone or tablet with these great apps

Over the years music fans have gradually changed how they listen to their music, and what they listen to it on. With the rise of the smartphone it’s only natural that now the one device we carry with us everywhere is also our primary media player. On Android, we’re also fortunate that there’s a huge community of developers that create apps that can better the experience we’re provided by the folks who made our phones.

The Google Play Store has many music related apps to choose from, but some do stand out from the crowd. It’d be impossible to look at all of them, so here we’ve chosen 5 of them that we think are some of the best there is. Let’s take a look.

    



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Xbox One SmartGlass beta apps bring TV controls to Android, Windows and Windows Phone

Microsoft only just revealed it would test new TV remote features on the Xbox One and its associated SmartGlass apps, and Windows Phone Central points out that right now anyone can give them a try. All you need is one of the game systems and a device running Android, Windows 8 or Windows Phone 8. We tried out the apps and they install right alongside the standard Xbox One Smartglass apps, although there are some known issues and rough edges. The smiley face button serves as a way to report any issues, but overall things worked smoothly, and we were able to navigate recordings on a standard Comcast DVR or surf through the OneGuide without a problem. Download the apps now and try them via Google Play, the Windows Store or Windows Phone Store — we haven’t spotted a beta version for iOS yet.

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Via: WPCentral, Android Central

Source: Google Play, Windows Phone Store, Windows Store

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Best new Android apps from March 2014

best march

A lot of apps are released in the span of one month. It can be near impossible to keep track of them all. In order to help you find only the best apps that have been released in the last month we have assembled this list. Below you will find the best apps (and biggest updates) from the month of March. Check it out and see what apps you missed! (Click app headings for download link)

Cast Store

Cast Store

The Chromecast is starting to get support from a lot of Android apps. Unfortunately, the Chromecast section in the Play Store leaves a lot to be desired. New app “Cast Store” curates all of these Chromecast apps into an easy to use app store. Now you can find every app to take advantage of Chromecast’s full potential.

Coursera

coursera

Coursera connects students, professionals, and lifelong learners everywhere with free online courses from over 100 top-tier global universities and institutions. This app is full of valuable resources to further your education, and it’s all for free. With over 600 courses you are bound to find something interesting. Knowledge is power, which makes this app extremely powerful.

Fiverr

fiverr

What can you get for $5 anymore? With Fiverr you can get a lot. This popular service has been around for a while on other platforms. It allows people to earn some easy money while performing services that other people need. Need someone to do a voice-over for a video? Want someone to do a remix of your favorite songs? It can all be found on Fiverr.

HTC BlinkFeed

blinkfeed

Previously only available as a part of Sense, HTC BlinkFeed is now available in the Google Play store. This means that HTC will be able to update it much more easily, and other Android devices may soon be able to use it too. BlinkFeed is great if you want a simple way to keep up with social networks, calendars, and browse news.

Jawbone UP

up

Jawbone’s popular fitness tracking bands have had apps on iOS and Android for a while, but this month the Android app got a lot better The UP app now works with the Jawbone UP and UP24 fitness bands. The UP24 used to only sync with USB, but now it works with Bluetooth as well. With the app you can see real-time information about your physical stats and activities.

Link Bubble

link bubble

Link Bubble is a completely new way to browse the web on your Android device. When you click on a link the webpage begins to load in the background, allowing you to continue using the app you are in. Once the page is loaded it pops up on top of the current app. You never have to leave the app you are using or wait for pages to load. This is one of the coolest new apps we’ve seen.

Notifications+

notifications

Notifications+ solves a problem that many people have: getting Android notifications in the browser. This app makes it very easy to see all of your notifications in Chrome. There are many options and settings that allow you to customize exactly what notifications you will get. It’s very flexible and extremely handy for people who use a computer for most of the day.

Pebble 2.0

pebble

The Pebble app is not new to Android, but this month it got a giant update. Version 2.0 of the companion app for the popular smartwatch added a very important feature. It is now possible to browse the watchapp directory and install the latest apps and watch faces right from your Android phone. A Watchapp locker for your favorite apps and a new UI round out the new features.

Photowall

photowall

Photowall is a simple and fun app that works with Chromecast. With this app you can collaborate with friends and share pictures on the big screen. Anyone with the app can connect to the Chromecast and start sharing. No more showing photos on a small screen.

QuickClick

quickclick

QuickClick allows you to start any action with a sequence of Volume Buttons clicks. You can do things like take a photo or a video, toggle flashlight on and off, make a call, start a message, or start any app. Setting it up is simple. Just choose an action you want to launch, configure that action, choose the button sequence, and you’re done!

Remember the Umbrella

umbrella

One of the most important questions you can ask before going outside for the day is “will it rain?” Having an umbrella with you can be the difference between a good day and a bad day. This app will notify you when you leave the house if you should bring an umbrella. Not only is it very handy, but it is beautifully designed as well.

Timehop

timehop

This new app is a fun way to travel back in time through your social media. Ever wonder what you were tweeting about a year ago? Or what you were doing on Facebook when you first started? With this app you can take a trip down memory lane though almost all of your social networks. It has a beautiful design and is very easy to set up and use.

URL Shortener

URL

A URL shortener may sound like a boring app, but this one is very handy. In addition to allowing you to shorten URLs this app also tracks those URLs with dynamic and visual charts. You can see who is clicking on the links you share. Any link can be shared and shortened with the built-in “Share” option in Android.

Xpensy

xpensy

If you’re looking for a simple and beautiful app to track your expenses look no further than Xpensy. This app may not have the features that power users require, but for the casual user it’s perfect. You can track daily, weekly, and monthly expenses with colorful charts and graphs that show what areas you are spending the most on. Keep an eye on your spending.

What was your favorite app from March? Did we miss any of your favorites? Let us know below!

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Google Play Store Enhances Policy To Protect Users

Google is doing some house cleaning on its Play Store by introducing several new changes to its Google Play Developer Program Policy. The changes are meant to protect the consumers against the deceptive advertising practices as well as other shady activities of app developers. The developers themselves must also make sure right now that the ad networks or affiliates that they are using do not engage in these practices.

google play

Most of the changes in the Google Play Developer Program Policy are found in the App Promotion section which states.

Apps published on Google Play may not directly or indirectly engage in or benefit from the following behavior:

  • Promotion via deceptive ads on websites, apps or other properties, including simulated system, service, or app notifications or alerts.
  • Promotion or install tactics which cause redirection to Google Play or the download of the app without informed user action.
  • Unsolicited promotion via SMS services.

One of the key changes that this new policy brings is the elimination of the downloading of apps via a simulated system dialog box. This is quite popular in the Windows platform where a user will often see a pop-up ad on the screen that looks like a Windows dialog box. It will often warn users that their system has an error or that it is infected with malware and provides a way to resolve the issue by letting the user download a program. This tactic is now being used by developers in the Android system.

Under the Ad Policy category on the Ads Context guidelines the changes state that “Ads must not simulate or impersonate the user interface of any app, or notification and warning elements of an operating system. It must be clear to the user which app each ad is associated with or implemented in.” This basically warns the developers of the ad networks they may be using that may engage in deceptive behavior.

The new policy no longer allows apps to access the SMS feature without getting the consent of the user. A lot of app developers today on Android and even on iOS send out SMS as a way of making their apps viral. Sometimes it works but sometimes it doesn’t, the bottom line is that Google is clamping down on this practice.

With regards to in-app purchases, developers must now make it clear which feature in the app requires an additional charge.

Apps are right now banned from containing viruses, worms, malware or simply by linking to these security threats. They are also not allowed to modify any browser settings, add homescreen shortcuts, icons, or bookmarks.

Google has notified all app developers via email regarding these changes and are giving them some time to unpublish their apps and resubmit them before the apps gets banned. “Any new apps or app updates published after this notification will be immediately subject to the latest version of the Program Policy. If you find any existing apps in your catalog that don’t comply, we ask you to unpublish the app, or fix and republish the app within 15 calendar days of receiving this email. After this period, existing apps discovered to be in violation may be subject to warning or removal from Google Play.”

via google play

The post Google Play Store Enhances Policy To Protect Users appeared first on The Droid Guy.

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Apps of the Week: Cut the Rope 2, Shattered Planet, HTC Power to Give and more!

More great apps than you can shake a stick at

Here we are again wrapping up another great month of Apps of the Week columns. This week is no different than any other, though, as we’re still bringing together a selection of app picks from each of the writers here at Android Central and putting them on display all in one place. There are no restrictions at play here — if it’s an app that we use on our Android-powered phones, tablets, TVs or ovens, it’s fair game to show up in this list.

This week we have a more standard collection of apps, comprised of a couple new games to try out, an app that can make you feel like you’re helping out without lifting a finger and some utility apps to boot. Read along and see how this week’s picks stack up with the rest — you may just find one that works for you.

    



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Windows Phone 8.1′s new store may help you find apps faster

Windows Phone 8.1's storefront

Windows Phone 8.1 may not just add a bevy of software features — it may improve how you find software, too. WPCentral claims to have leaked details of a Windows Phone Store revamp in the OS that reportedly makes it easier to discover hot apps. Featured titles would take center stage in this new portal, and new sections would help you sift through fast-rising apps or specific categories. Upgrades could soon be less of hassle, for that matter. A new My Apps area would let you check for updates without waiting for notifications, and you could (finally!) tell Windows Phone to update apps automatically. There’s no certainty that this storefront will make it into the final WP8.1 release, but you won’t have to wait long for confirmation.

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Source: WPCentral

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How to use the Multi Window feature on the Samsung Galaxy TabPRO 8.4, TabPRO 10.1, and TabPRO 12.2

 Samsung_Multi_Window_Galaxy_TabPRO_8.4_TA

Multi Window isn’t anything new for Samsung. They were the first manufacturers to truly embrace real multitasking. Over the years, Samsung has made changes to how it works along with how many apps that it’s compatible with, and the new Galaxy TabPRO tablets are no exception. So if you’re someone who is in constant need to have two or more apps open at the same time, then head on past the break to see how to truly multitask.

Note: You can skip down to the bottom for our hands on video explaining everything in detail.

To get into Multi Window, you first need to enable it from the power settings menu found in the notification panel. You can also go into the main Settings and tap the Device tab to see the on/off toggle.

To open apps, it’s a little different than the Galaxy S 4 and Galaxy Note 3 running Android 4.2.2. Just place your finger at the right-most part of the display  and swipe to the left, and the pop out menu of compatible apps will appear. This can be done from with the Magazine UX, any of the standard Android home screens, or any app that is displayed. Just like the Galaxy S 4 and Note 3 running Android 4.2, you can also long press the back key, but when you swipe the pop out menu away, you won’t get that little arrow icon at the edge of the display.

Once the pop out menu is opened, you can either tap or drag the icon of the app you want to open. If you use the tap method, apps will open as mini popups that will float on top of any other apps and can be resized. This method allows you to open more than two apps at the same time. These apps can be minimized to a little floating icon like a Facebook Chat Head so that you can easily open it again from within any app. This Chat Head style was introduced with the Galaxy Note 3 as part of Pen Window.

The other method of opening Multi Window apps is to drag the app icon (from the Multi Window pop out) to the main part of the screen. By doing that, it will open in either full screen or half screen. So if you don’t already have a Multi Window compatible app open, by sliding one of the Multi Window apps into the main area, that app will open in full screen. Open the Multi Window pop out again and drag another app, and both apps will be top/bottom (portrait mode) or right/left (landscape mode). In the case of the TabPRO 12.2, you might be able to open 4 apps at the same time, but I wasn’t able to try it. You can on the NotePRO 12.2.

Interacting between apps is also a breeze. For example, you can have Email and the Gallery open at the same time (side by side or top and bottom). Just navigate to a picture you want to attach to an email, and drag it from the Gallery into your email draft, and it will be attached. However, this will only work for the stock Email app, not Gmail.

Multi Window is pretty cool if you can find use for it. Check out my video below which further explains how everything works.

Click here to view the embedded video.

Come comment on this article: How to use the Multi Window feature on the Samsung Galaxy TabPRO 8.4, TabPRO 10.1, and TabPRO 12.2

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AppBucket site owners plead guilty to pirating Android apps

Two Florida residents have just pleaded guilty to the charge of conspiracty to commit copyright infringement, in this case copyrighted Android apps. This conviction is being hailed by the US Department of Justice as a landmark victory in its fight to protect intellectual property in the US.

Aside from fragmentation, one of the oft mentioned reasons why some developers still shy away from the Android platform is the rampant software piracy. Granted, this isn’t confined to Android alone, but it is not as notoriously bad compared to others. The operations behind Android app piracy, however, as considerably smaller than, say, desktop software, making them easier targets for law enforcement.

One such example is the AppBucket web site, which was reported to have been in operation from 2010 to 2012. The site provided access to, according to the FBI’s sting operation, thousands of copies of popular Android apps. The DOJ says that the distribution of the apps would have amounted to more than $700,000. Considering how Android apps cost below $10 on average, that is definitely a substantial number.

AppBucket operators Anthony Narbone, aged 26, and Thomas Allen Dye, aged 21, are scheduled to appear again in court in June and July, respectively, for sentencing. Depending on how it goes, each of them can spend a maximum of five years in prison.

VIA: CNET

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Apps of the Week: Link Bubble, Citymapper, Agent and more!

We have another great set of apps to check out this weekend

It’s another Saturday afternoon, and that means it’s time for another edition of our Apps of the Week column. We take a slot every week to show off an app from each of the writers here at Android Central, along with a quick explanation of why it’s on our device. These could be utility apps, background services, photography apps, social networks, games or just random odds-and-ends, but if the app is installed on our phone or tablet we want to tell you about it.

Read along with us after the break and check out the apps we’ve been using this week — you may just find one that will be a great choice for your own device as well.

    



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Amazon Appstore giving away 14 hit apps for free as part of birthday celebrations

amazon_birthday_promo

A couple weeks ago Amazon announced that they would be giving away 2 weeks of gifts through the US app store to celebrate the third birthday of the app store. Now the company is offering 14 premium Android apps that normally sell for $50.

The apps being offered include Polaris Office, normally $13, Sketchbook pro, normally $5 and Monopoly, also normally $5. Hit the break for the full list of apps being offered for free!

  • Polaris Office ($12.99)
  • Runtastic PRO GPS Running, Walking & Fitness Tracker ($4.99)
  • Swype Keyboard ($3.99)
  • mSecure – Password Manager and Secure Digital Wallet ($9.99)
  • PrintHand Mobile Print Premium ($12.95)
  • Worms 2: Armageddon ($0.99)
  • Worms 2: Armageddon (Kindle Tablet Edition) ($0.99)
  • King of Math Junior ($1.99)
  • Fruit Ninja: Puss in Boots ($0.99)
  • Dr. Panda’s Airport ($1.99)
  • MONOPOLY ($4.99)
  • Sketchbook Pro ($4.99)
  • Ski Safari: Adventure Time ($0.99)
  • SpinArt ($1.99)
  • Battle Maiden Yuko Runner ($10.00)

Come comment on this article: Amazon Appstore giving away 14 hit apps for free as part of birthday celebrations

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March Madness: The best Android apps for following The NCAA Basketball Tournament

March Madness has begun! Here’s how to follow the games on Android

NCAA basketball brackets have been picked, and games start Tuesday. It’s a great time for fans, and with the help of a few Android apps, you’ll never miss a minute of it. We’ve got apps for keep tabs on scores, stats, players, teams, news, and video of the action. There’s even a game tossed in just so you can stay in the spirit between matches.

    



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Amazon Appstore celebrates its third birthday with deals on apps and games

amazon-appstore-for-android

More birthday wishes are headed out to more digital apps marketplaces this week. This time, Amazon is celebrating the third birthday of the Amazon Appstore (which takes place March 22nd), and you had to guess they would commemorate the event with some apps and games being on sale.

Amazon is offering premium apps and games up to 60% off for titles like Wheel of Fortune, Terraria, Batman: Arkham City Lockdown.

Amazon is also offering 50% back on in-app purchases for select games like alt 8, Animal Voyage, Kingdoms of Camelot, The Hobbit, Sonic Dash, World at Arms and Despicable Me: Minion Rush. The “cash back” will be credited to you in the form of Amazon Coins, which can be used to buy more games and apps and in-app purchases.

Amazon says they’ll be running promotions over the next two weeks, though we’ll have to wait to see what they have in store each and every day between now and then. You can check out all of the current deals at Amazon’s site by heading right here.

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Use Cast Store to easily find apps that have Chromecast support

cast store

While most people have been finding Chromecast apps by simply searching for the word “Chromecast” in the Google Play Store, one developer thought it necessary to make an app dedicated to finding and highlighting all the apps with Chromecast support in the Google Play Store.

Cast Store is its name, and it’s quite simple in its approach. Users will be able to sort by games and apps, and will be able to drill even deeper with specific subcategories beneath those. Beyond that, users can also note which apps are their favorite, and can suggest new apps that the developer might not have picked up on.

Lists are sortable by newest, name and rating in both ascending and descending order. There’s a search feature if you’re looking for something specific. You’ll also get a quick look at the apps’ ratings and descriptions, so you won’t have to jump to the Google Play Store each time you want to learn something new about it.

All in all, the app is pretty good for its purpose, and should be getting even better in the weeks to come as the developer looks to introduce more features. It is ad-supported, though there will soon be an option to get rid of the ads through an in-app premium purchase. Be sure to give it a whirl and see if you can’t find that perfect app with Chromecast support that you’ve been looking for.

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