Hootsuite’s Android app receives update bringing better image sharing and content publishing

hootsuitelogoHootsuite’s Android application has been updated with several new features, mostly focused on image sharing and scheduled content publishing. The update brings the app to version 3.1, marking the first iterative update since it’s massive 3.0 update not too long ago.

Most of the new features are noticeable in the tweaked interface. The UI for composing tweets has been moved around a bit, making the send tweet arrow more prominent while hiding scheduling options behind a drop-down menu. When placing images within a tweet, Hootsuite now also shows a live preview of those images, which it didn’t do before. There are a few other slight changes, including Hootsuite being able to send out images to social media as opposed to just links, and a menu for looking at your scheduled content before it goes live. Read more

Google adding logo branding to app splash screens on Android

2015-06-29 22.10.29Google has added an interesting tweak to their current crop of Android apps; splash screens with the Google logo. If you’ve updated and used some of Google’s Android apps lately, you may have noticed a brief splash screen upon opening the apps. The screen is simple, displaying the app’s logo and Google’s brand logo at the bottom, but it definitely creates a slight delay when opening the app. That’s not a good thing.

Most of us want our apps to open as quickly as possible, but Google wants to give themselves and other developers a chance to push some brand recognition. They’ve even changed Android’s app developer guidelines to suggest making a brief splash screen while an app initializes, recommending a concise logo or tagline without flooding the screen with too much text. Read more

LG Tribute 2 and LG Volt 2 now available through Boost Mobile

LG volt 2 tribute 2 boost mobileA pair of new LG phones are now available for Boost Mobile customers, including the Tribute 2 and the Volt 2. Both devices offer pretty similar hardware, with the Volt offering a slightly larger screen and battery.

Both phones are powered by a Snapdragon 810 CPU with 1 GB of RAM, and they both have 8 GB of internal storage (plus microSD card slot!) and run Android 5.1. The Volt sports a 5-inch display while the Tribute has a 4.5-inch screen, and the Volt 2’s camera shoots at a slightly higher resolution of 8 megapixels, beating out the 5 megapixel shooter in the Tribute 2. No major differences, but you’ll pay a $50 premium for that nicer camera and bigger screen. Read more

Leaked photos of OnePlus 2 show both sides of the device

oneplus 2 frontWe all know the OnePlus 2 is coming sometime this year. The company may be able to surprise us with some features of the handset, but the actual device itself shouldn’t shock anyone. We’re still trying to pick up on what kind of hardware to expect, but today we’re getting a good glimpse at the front and back of the phone ahead of its official unveiling.

The photos are a little blurry, but they give you a clear look at the front and back of the device. This particular model has wooden backing and a very large screen with small bezels. There’s also some kind of button or mechanism on the back of the device below the camera and flash, which might end up being the fingerprint scanner. Read more

Google uses a robot to check for lag on Android and Chrome OS devices

Screenshot 2015-06-29 10.33.07Testing for input lag on a smart device seems like something only a human would be able to do, but Google apparently uses a giant robot to handle the task. Is there anything we can’t develop a giant robot to do?

The machine is called TouchBot and it tests Android and Chrome OS devices by tapping the screen in different places, then recording what’s going on. It’s a pretty cool automated concept, and apparently works well for Google. Hit the video below to see it in action. Read more

Sony E5663 looks like a high-end, compact phone with impressive cameras

sony_logo_720New details have leaked about an upcoming Sony smartphone with the model number E5663. The device looks like it’ll use a 1080p, 4.6-inch screen, which is pretty rare to see these days. Most phones have much bigger screens with as many pixels as possible, but apparently Sony did well enough with the Xperia Z3 Compact that they’re going to keep looking into these smaller devices with good hardware.

Other specs include an octa-core MediaTek MT6795 processor, 3 GB of RAM, and 16 GB of internal storage. The front facing camera appears to be a crazy 13 megapixel shooter, and the rear camera is listed at 21 megapixels. If these specs hold up, this device definitely won’t be a slouch compared to some of its bigger competitors. Read more

Galaxy S6 takes first place in real world speed test, beating out LG’s G4 and the iPhone 6

Samsung_Galaxy_S6_LG_G4_Cameras_01_TAA new massive benchmark from Tom’s Guide has put six of the best performing smartphones on the market against each other to see which phone came out on top in a variety of situations. The tests measured everything from real-life performance and tasks you’d typically do on your smartphone every day, to gaming and other benchmarks. The test measured the Samsung Galaxy S6, LG G4, HTC One M9, Google Nexus 6, Asus Zenfone 2, and Apple iPhone 6, so there’s a very wide variety of hardware here. Read more

Google’s own self-driving cars released to the streets of Mountain View, California

google_self_driving_car_prototypeGoogle is finally letting some of its quirky self-driving cars out to drive around the streets of Mountain View, California after extensively testing the technology that powers the vehicles. The cars aren’t completely ready to take off on their own, however; their speeds are being capped at 25 MPH, and they still include traditional driving mechanisms like a steering wheel and pedals. Smart safety precaution on Google’s part.

So if you’re in the Mountain View area, keep an eye out for some of the small little vehicles that Google’s testing out. Read more

Cartoon Network’s Formula Cartoon All-Stars racing game launches on Play Store

Screenshot 2015-06-25 20.22.19Cartoon Network has launched a brand new racing game onto Google’s Play Store called Formula Cartoon All-Stars. The game features several characters and tons of tracks from Cartoon Network’s most popular franchises, including shows like Adventure Time and Regular Show, plus several others.

The gameplay offers a hectic cart-racing experience, not unlike Mario Kart. There are tons of boosts, items, and weapons to keep races exciting, and the control scheme is completely optimized for just one finger. Read more

Mobile news app Circa fails to find a buyer, goes on indefinite break

circa newsCirca was a niche news app that took a mobile-first approach to information curation. It was a cool app with a decent number of downloads and an impressive average rating on Google’s Play Store, but apparently that just wasn’t enough to help sustain the company.

The co-founder of Circa, Matt Galligan, released a statement today announcing that the app/service will be taking an indefinite hiatus after failing to be purchased by a bigger company. Circa developers looked at multiple monetization options, but none of them really fit what was considered the focus of the company, which lead to this situation where Circa would either be acquired by another more profitable company, or it would be doomed. Looks like the latter happened. Read more