With hectic schedules, it can be hard to keep track of everything in your news feed. That’s why we created the TalkAndroid Daily Dose. This is where we recap the day’s hottest stories so you can get yourself up to speed in quick fashion. Happy reading!!
Are in-app purchases for free-to-play games effective?
Here’s how to get the Google Now Launcher on any Android phone or tablet
Motorola Active Display app gets buzzy with latest update
We’ve been getting a couple hints from HTC about upcoming devices, and now Drew Bamford, who’s the lead software designer at HTC, has given a few hints of his own at Mobile World Congress this week.
When Drew was asked about what’s to come in the next few years, Bamford had this to say about HTC’s plans for their upcoming March 25th announcement:
“I think the great thing is that you won’t have to wait three years or even a year. On March 25th, we’re going to have a lot more to talk about with some new experiences that you’ll be very excited about. And really, what we’re doing there is capitalizing on the experiences that have been successful in HTC Sense 5 and 5.5 and really taking them to the next level. faster Access to the information that’s important to you, a more responsive experience that understand you and anticipates your needs and more ways to express yourself with your phone.”
Remember the interactive film Windy Day that graced Moto X displays around the world? The next interactive film heading to Motorola’s flagship is Buggy Night. While we have no idea what the storyline is based on the trailer (which you can watch after the break), it clearly looks like it will be as entertaining and intuitive as Windy Day. Buggy Night is listed as coming soon; however, expect it to surface without warning just as Windy Day did.
Hit the break for the Buggy Night trailer.
LG’s Chul Bae Lee had plenty to say when being interviewed by a Russian technology site. Lee is the company’s leader over at the design center, so he is a pretty credible source to be saying all of this. On the subject of metal phones, Lee questions why HTC has not been very successful if metal is a huge demand. Also, he claims LG is considering the introduction of metal; however, no time frame is provided. Lee then switched gears to Apple and metal. He says that Apple’s iPhone has poor reception due to metal interfering with the wireless signal. And finally, Lee assures everyone that LG will not produce a very thin metal smartphone like Huawei since battery life would take a huge hit.
Lee also talked about the success of the LG G2’s design. In a pre-release survey, about 50% favored the placement of the volume and power buttons on the backside. In return, LG was very happy and continued to run with the design (as if they had a choice at that point). Lee also feels that reviews for the G2’s design have been respectable.
Via: Phone Arena
We have all come across games with in-app purchases, and I often wonder if it’s really all that effective. I don’t mind spending money on any app or game if it’s worth it, but when a developer designs a game that forces you to pay for something to succeed in the game, I have a problem with that. I would rather the developer give me a demo of the game for free with an option to purchase the full version or the remaining levels for a one time purchase. In-app purchases remind me of the 1-900 days in which they tried to lure lonely men into coughing a bunch of dollars and getting nothing in return. Why should I buy a special red ship that has more fire power? Let me earn it the old fashioned way.
According to a survey conducted by Swrve, it appears as though the majority of people aren’t falling for this trap. According to them, only 0.15 percent of mobile gamers contribute 50 percent of all of the in-app purchases. These people are referred to as “Whales”, but I have another name for them that probably wouldn’t be a good idea to say.
Ashton Kutcher’s role as a Product Engineer with Lenovo is very real. After appearing in a few ads involving their Yoga Tablet line since October, Kutcher’s reach has now extended to smartphones. David Roman, Chief Marketing Officer at Lenovo, spoke with Re/code and the actor “not only sees himself as an engineer, but he is an engineer. If he sees a problem, he wants to solve it.” Roman explained that while Kutcher is not involved directly with the design, he is certainly providing assistance with the experience of Lenovo smartphones coming later this year.
If you are doubting Kutcher’s actual ability to contribute, think again. Before starting his modeling and acting career, he was studying biochemical engineering at the University of Iowa. Also, he has invested in Foursquare, Airbnb, and Uber while starting A-Grade Investments.
As we get closer to its March 25 announcement in New York City, new information continues to surface about The all new HTC One. This time around, @evleaks gives us a look at the AT&T model of HTC’s 2014 flagship. It looks like the only truly noticeable branding is on the backside where AT&T has opted to stamp their logo. Also, the carrier has its 4G LTE icon in the status bar; however, that is a common change among all carriers.
Now if only we knew what Verizon’s carrier branding will be…
Just how admired are the world’s largest tech companies? According to Fortune, very much so. Unsurprisingly, Apple finished in first. I say unsurprisingly because Apple does consistently deliver products that ‘just work’ and rarely receive severe backlash from the media and consumers. Amazon rolled into second and Google earned bronze in third place. Samsung, however, was twenty-first. This, of course, should not be worrisome as the list is comprised of companies in any industry. For example, Costco was twelfth on the list.
Check out the source link below to see the full list that Fortune created.
Usually Amazon has a free app of the day to entice customers to utilize their Appstore. But today, the company is offering an additional eight applications to be picked up for absolutely nothing. And the apps available are quite impressive — Wheel of Fortune, Sonic Jump, and Wreck-It Ralph among others. Excluding the usual free app of the day, Amazon’s set of free apps total about $17.
Hit the break for the full list.
The Google Now Launcher (aka Google Experience Launcher) was initially limited to just the Nexus 5, but Google opened it up to more devices a couple of days ago by releasing it in the Play Store. Unfortunately, that “opening up” only meant Nexus or Google Play Edition (GPE) devices. Very cool devices indeed, but not all that popular. If you’re feeling left out in the cold, don’t fret because you can still get it for you phone or tablet with ease. The best part of it is there are no major stipulations like having to be rooted. However, you will need to be running KitKat for this method or it will not install. If you are, jump past the break to get started.
While it might be some time before the Android 4.4 KitKat update on the T-Mobile LG G2 rolls out over the air, the update is now detectable straight from LG through the PC utility. If you are comfortable manually installing the update you can also get it through a download link.
The new update will bring a number of standard KitKat features, such as the white notifications bar icons, as well as a number of performance upgrades.
Source: XDA Developers
At MWC 2014 earlier this week, Sony unveiled their latest flagship devices, the Xperia Z2 smartphone and Z2 Tablet. For those not counting the days, this comes only about five and a half months after Sony unveiled the “flagship” Xperia Z1 at IFA 2013. According to Sony Mobile Creative Director Kurozumi Yoshiro, this quick turnaround is a reflection on how fast the industry is moving. According to Kurozumi, “In order to maintain a flagship, you must update at this frequency.” Thus, the Xperia Z2 is the flagship device for the first half of 2014 and buyers can expect a new flagship device to appear before the end of the year to serve in that role for the second half of 2014.
Motorola has released a minor update to their Active Display app for Moto X, Droid Ultra, Droid Mini, and Droid Maxx smartphones. The primary change included in this latest version sets the app to honor the system vibration settings you may have set for your device. Just go into Settings -> Sound -> Vibrate on touch to turn vibrations on or off. Motorola also included some bug fixes and other optimizations in the update which reportedly make everything work much smoother.
Owners of the impacted Motorola devices should be receiving a notification that the update is available, but if they can’t wait for that they can use the link below to grab the update from Google Play.
Google Play Download Link
Those who are lost in California and are tempted to look at a map on their phone can now breathe easier knowing that it’s not illegal to do so. According to a court in California, the state that has some of the strictest distracted driving laws in the U.S., using your device to look at maps does not count as apart of the law preventing drivers from talking on their phones without the use of a hands-free device. It appears that the law isn’t written clear enough to count towards looking at maps.
As smartphones continue to push higher density and higher resolutions, bigger and faster processors, and better cameras; the need for better and longer lasting battery life is becoming drastically more important. Even though attempts have been made in this department, OEM’s still struggle to achieve the all day usage dream. Samsung looks to be giving it a go as it implements some new and interesting techniques to squeeze some extra battery out of the new Galaxy S 5.
On top of an improved battery saver mode that turns the display black and white to save battery Samsung has implemented the following enhancements: