A mixed bag of results for Android apps according to the latest App Annie Index for W2 of 2013 which showed Google Play downloads higher than iOS App store downloads by 10%. The downside is that the top iOS apps are generating 2.3 times the revenue of the top Google Play apps. In terms of downloads, Russia continues to climb the iOS App Store charts and now finds itself joining the United States as the only countries in the top five on both the Google Play and iOS App Store top download lists. Another market to keep an eye on is Brazil, which climbed two spots to take a spot as one of the top countries for downloads from the Google Play store.
In looking at the apps that consumers are downloading, games continue to dominate. This is good news for developers hoping to cash in as games generated 80% of all revenue for Google Play developers and 75% of all revenue for iOS App Store developers. Following behind Games in Google Play were downloads of Communication apps after jumping two spots since the first quarter. Meanwhile, in iOS land the top three download categories remained stable with Entertainment and Photo & Video apps taking the number two and three spots.
On the monetization side, iOS Music apps gained three spots this past quarter while Social Networking apps picked up one spot, though both continue to trail Games. The big loser is the Productivity category which slipped to fourth place. Things were more stable in the Google Play store where developers continued to primarily make money with Games, Communication and Social apps. Interestingly, Travel & Local apps jumped into the top five, knocking Productivity off the list.
source: App Annie
Subscribers to the Hulu Plus service, Hulu’s paid subscription service, who also own a Chromecast or have one on order, will be pleased to learn that Hulu is working to bring support for Chromecast to their Android and iOS apps. Presumably Hulu will also be building in native “casting” support to their normal player similar to Netflix or YouTube on the computer. Hulu joins several other content providers lining up to support Google’s Chromecast device.
Hulu also indicated that they do not have a problem with a workaround users are currently taking advantage of, casting Hulu content via their browser tabs using the tab casting beta feature available in Chrome. Hulu representatives said they consider this to be the equivalent of plugging a PC into an HDTV via an HDMI capable.
Although initially released with native support for only a few services, Chromecast is very quickly gaining solid support from content providers. Google’s release of the Cast SDK will help developers bring new apps to consumers in quick fashion, with some private efforts already surfacing to address other shortcomings of the device, like the inability to play local content as easily as content-provider titles.
via: The Verge
Google has revealed they are working on a new Google Now card that will deliver local news stories based on a user’s location. Google Now cards work off of algorithms to present the user with “contextually relevant” items. Among the inputs used to determine what is relevant are interests, time of day, and location. The new card is being tested in a closed beta right now, apparently only within Google itself, as revealed by Johanna Wright, Google’s vice president of search and assist. Read more
In the next few days Google plans on giving its Chromecast its very first update and will be provided via OTA. You won’t even know it’s being updated as it’ll automatically download and apply the update without you needing to do anything. According to Google, the update will provide improved reliability, security and performance. Always nice to have, right?
For you early adopters out there, how are you liking the Chromecast thus far?
source: Google Chrome Releases
With the newest DROID line came news of a new processing system running under the hood. The X8 system isn’t a processor in itself. It’s a combination Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro SoC with two digital signal processors. One of these can be used as a low-power CPU. At the very heart it’s a Snapdragon S4 Pro but with a custom firmware. Iqbal Arshad, Motorola’s senior vice president of engineering, had this to say:
“We’ve done additional optimizations on top of that such as optimizing the entire Linux user space to move it to an ARM instruction set, cache optimization, Dalvik just-in-time optimization, and we’ve changed the file system. It’s full hardware-software integration to deliver best-in-class performance.”
Motorola is playing it close to the chest though as they aren’t saying where the “contextual computing processor” and “natural language processor” are from or who actually manufacturers them. Arshad did mention that they had a hand in its design:
“It’s done by Motorola, a lot of design in the entire system. The actual silicon is specified by us but we don’t go ahead and design and fab it. It’s not an ARM processor, it’s a very low-power separate processor.”
In standby mode, the contextual computing processor looks to control showing the status and notification information on the display; on top of being in control of display and touch interaction. Audio, noise cancellation and estimation are handled by the language processor. Here’s the kicker though: Motorola isn’t using outside noise-cancellation technology.
Until then, the only way to revive the device is to hold the power button until it restarts. We’ll let you all know once the update is pushed!
source: Android Police
It’s no secret that Verizon customers have been waiting quite sometime for HTC’s flagship One device to finally hit the Big Red. Sadly, it’s launch seems to be continuously delayed. It was supposed to be August 1st, but it looks like is has been pushed back to August 15th.
How many of you Verizon customers have been patiently, or impatiently, waiting for this device to finally drop?
source: Droid Life
We told you about the Samsung Galaxy Folder a couple of weeks ago. This clamshell Android phone bares the model number SCH-W789, and is also known as the Hennessy. This isn’t the first Samsung clamshell Android phone. They actually offered the SCH-W999 in China a year and half ago. This one is very similar, but with slightly better specs. There will be two screens just like the SCH-W999 and both will be 3.3-inches with a resolution of 480 x 320. It will also have a 1.2GHz quad-core CPU, 1GB of RAM, and a 5MP rear camera. Android 4.1.2 is onboard, which isn’t the latest, but not bad for a phone of this caliber. These specs differ from what we first heard a couple of weeks ago.
It will be available in both China and Korea, most likely in August. China’s Telecom will get the “Luxury Gold” variant. We have no idea how much this one will cost, but the SCH-W999 went for ¥8990 ($1,410) back in December 2011. Not cheap.
source: Blog Of Mobile
Photo sphere first debuted on Google’s Nexus 4 device and has taken pictures to a whole new level. Problem is, it can be quite tricky to get a clear and good Photo sphere picture. They’re not exactly as quick as taking selfie’s. Thanks to Google, they’ve given us a video giving a clear description on how to take good Photo sphere pictures. Check out the video below after the break!