Amazon Appstore renovated with new-look UI

by Harrison Kaminsky on
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Amazon Android

The Amazon Appstore has gained a lot of traction as well as respect in the Android community, but was somewhat slacking in the “looks” department.

In Version 7 of the app store, Amazon continues its dark UI scheme, while it still doesn’t really resemble the normal controls used in other Android applications, but still is very nice looking and built well.

This new Appstore is actually based on the one in Kindle Fire HDX devices and is a pretty smart move by Amazon, as the company works to create a more unified ecosystem on devices.

You can download the Appstore to your device in the source link below.

Source: Amazon 

Sony files patent for “smart wig” with computing technology and sensors built in

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Sony wig

Just when you thought you’ve seen it all, especially after the Motorola filed a patent for a “smart tattoo” to be placed on one’s throat, Sony comes along to outdo it all.

The company filed a patent today for special wigs with computing technology and sensors built in. It’s definitely not as permanent as the tattoo concept, but perhaps a bit more bizarre. We’re one step closer to being complete cyborgs. Here’s an excerpt from the patent application:

Wearable computing device, comprising a wig that is adapted to cover at least a part of a head of a user, at least one sensor for providing input data, a processing unit that is coupled to the at least one sensor for processing said input data, and a communication interface that is coupled to the processing unit for communicating with a second computing device. The at least one sensor, the processing unit and the communication interface are arranged in the wig and at least partly covered by the wig in order to be visually hidden during use.

Like I’ve said before, we can’t really judge whether this is totally insane or not, because most of the things we now see as mundane would have seemed pretty insane back in the day.

Source: Techaeris 

Samsung plans for flexible screen on next-gen of smartphones leak, features interactive side-pane

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Flexible 1

The race to release the first smartphone with a flexible screen is over. The LG G Flex and Samsung Galaxy Round have been released in all their glory. Now, the race begins to create an a smartphone that actually utilizes the flexible screen correctly.

Some Samsung sketches just leaked, which show exactly what they’re trying to do here with their next generation of smartphones. These ideas aren’t anything new, as Samsung showed us a prototype with a bent screen on the side of the device, creating a control/information bar.

Bloomberg brings us today’s leaked plans. Hit the break to see just a few things that could be done with such a phone:

» Read the rest

Nova Launcher Beta Gets Updated, Includes KitKat’s 4.4 Transparent Nav Buttons and Notification Bar

by Joe Sirianni on
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Nova Launcher 4.4 Update Translucent

We’ve got to give credit and praise where credit and praise are due. When Google announces a new update version, such as KitKat, it can often take third party developers to catch up with the changes and get their application up to speed. So we’re tipping our hats to the developer behind Nova Launcher, a third party home replacement app that allows you to customize your home screen in a variety of ways. Since the announcement of the Nexus 5, we’ve seen the new “translucent” look that comes with 4.4 and well, we want it. As for several selected devices the new look has been added by the dev to Beta version of Nova Launcher and also takes advantage of custom icon packs. And though the selected devices, as we’ve mentioned, are slim, there are some big hitters (see changelog for full list on Kevin Barry’s G+ page at source link).     » Read the rest

Oppo N1 CyanogenMod Limited Edition to begin shipping internationally in December

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CyanogenMod Oppo N1

The upcoming Oppo N1 will start shipping internationally this December, and one of its key features is that it will come with support to easily flash the CyanogenMod ROM. News also came in that there would be a limited edition version of the phone that would be pre-installed with CyanogenMod, and will be available at the same time as the regular variant.

A news release sent out today also mentioned that special features such as O-Touch and the O-Click Bluetooth remote will also be included. Elements of Oppo’s ColorOS will also be built in, with the ability to wake the phone by double-tapping its screen, much like LG’s “Knock-On” feature.

The limited edition variant will also come with some CyanogenMod extras, including a special edition case, stickers, and some other things. The best part of all this? The limited edition variant costs exactly the same as the standard version.

Anyone interested in picking one of these bad boys up?

Source: Oppo

Motorola files patent for “smart tattoo” on throat

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Wearable Tattoo

We’ve seen some pretty crazy patents filed in the past few months, and simultaneously, wearables are becoming more and more popular in the mobile device industry.

But it still may be a bit surprising to find out that Motorola has just filed a patent for a “smart tattoo” which would be placed on one’s throat, and would act as a microphone to improve voice quality so well that you would be nearly crystal clear on the other end.

Most of these far-out patents don’t go into too much detail about how they will work, but Motorola’s filing actually gets pretty extensive. Hit the source link below for more information.

A lot of people think this idea is extremely ridiculous, and this could never possibly reach the market and be successful, but we have certainly been surprised before.

Via: Android Guys
Source: US Patent and Trademark Office

Layouts For Living Now Available For Download To New And Existing SwiftKey Users (Video)

by Joe Sirianni on
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SwiftKeyLayouts_1

Personally, of the many options of keyboards one can have on the Android platform, SwiftKey is my absolutely favorite due to its uncanny accuracy and its ability to learn your various typing styles. So it’s my pleasure to announce that the much awaited ”Layouts for Living” by SwiftKey is now available. The 4.3 update is available for download on the Play Store and the Amazon Appstore for those ready to dive in. The new layouts aim to assist with a more comfortable and seamless typing experience no matter what device you’re on. Whether it be a smartphone, tablet or any MID in between, Swiftkey has individually tailored the user experience.  And if you’re an existing customer, the app is available to you free as an update, so just head on back to the Play Store and retrieve it.

» Read the rest

Leaked screenshot of Moto Maker shows wood backing option, should come in next two months

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Wood Back Evleaks

You can always count on @evleaks to answer the questions.

We haven’t heard about the legendary wooden backing on the Moto X in quite a while now, but we knew that at some point it would be coming. While the hype surrounding the Moto X is starting to die down a bit, expect it to get a little noisier…

A recent tweet from @evleaks shows Moto Maker offering “Wood” as a backing option for the device.

The Wood backing will cost you an extra $50 and comes in Teak, Ebony, Rosewood, and Bamboo wood tones. Expect the new option to hit Moto Maker sometime in the fourth quarter, which began in the beginning of October…  You’ve got two months to go, Motorola.

Source: @evleaks

Android 4.4 KitKat design/development videos released

by Harrison Kaminsky on
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android_kitkat_hero

If you’re a developer, you’re certainly interested in some of the changes being made in the latest version of Android OS, 4.4 KitKat— this includes new guidelines, orientations, and workflows for user interaction and experience. For development, this includes access to new tools or APIs. Check out some of the videos below!

» Read the rest

Massive updates to Google Now to come alongside Android 4.4 launch

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Nexus 5 Google Now

Google constantly updates Google Now, tweaking small things under the hood, normally without us even knowing it. But with Android 4.4 and the Nexus 5, we’ll see some major changes brought to how the app works, which Android and Chrome OS chief Sundar Pichai explained at a press conference this afternoon.

The plan is the seamlessly blend search results with the apps already installed on your device. For example, when searching for a restaurant, instead of Google Now bringing you to the clunky OpenTable mobile site, you’ll have the app opened with exactly what you’re looking for, right then and there. Same goes for the AllRecipes app when looking for recipes, and a select number of apps. The new features should roll out by mid-November, and an API will also be released which will allow all developers to enable their apps for this functionality.

» Read the rest