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!
Android 4.4 ala KitKat looks to be a big release. Big enough to warrant a name change over being another version of Jelly Bean. With the upgrade it’s been rumored that Hangouts would take over the SMS/MMS functions. If today’s post on the Android Developers blog is any indication it looks like this will actually be the case.
According to the post, there are big changes coming to SMS/MMS apps in KitKat. The first change is creating a public API for SMS handling. In addition to the new API, 4.4 will allow users to set default SMS apps. The blog post purposely spills the beans on this new feature as Google wants third party app developers to prepare their apps for the new OS version.
Amazon announced the availability of a new API today to help developers further monetize their apps. The Amazon Mobile Associates API is an extension of the company’s Amazon Associates web-based affiliate program, bringing the power of Amazon to Kindle Fire and Android based devices. The new API enables developers to: » Read the rest
Dropbox has maintained its position as one of the major players in cloud storage space by offering tons of features like automatic photo sharing and storage and some excellent cross-platform apps. Today, they announced a new API for third-party developers called Sync that lets apps take advantage of Dropbox’s reliable storage features, mainly for syncing application data for users. Dropbox Sync is a first step in creating a Dropbox Platform for developers to use to add in cloud storage and file syncing to their applications, which is especially handy for cross-device and cross-platform apps.
Dropbox already offers constantly updated folders and files, so adding in the ability for developers to sync an app’s data across many devices is invaluable. Want to see all of your sketches in your favorite drawing app on both your phone and your tablet? Dropbox Sync can handle that. It’s mainly a developer’s tool, but it’s going to allow developers to make some pretty big improvements to their applications and pad out Dropbox’s impressive 175 million active users.
Lambda Labs is a startup company that released a beta facial recognition API for Google Glass last year. Co-founder of the company, Stephen Balaban, says that the next version of the API should be available to developers within a week. Since launching the beta, Balaban says the company sees over 5 million API calls per month and usage by over 1,000 developers. Not too bad for a startup making an API for a product that hasn’t even been released to the public yet.
The new API will allow developers to integrate facial recognition like finding friends in a crowd or making intelligent contacts in your device based on the faces it can recognize. It might sound a little privacy invasive, but it doesn’t do the recognition in real-time. Glass snaps a picture, uploads the picture to a server that handles the recognition, then sends the notification back to the device. Still, it’s a pretty creepy, but cool, thought. Hopefully we’ll hear more about it in the near future.
Dropbox is releasing a new API for developers that should help bring new capabilities to apps that tie into the service for file storage and sharing. The new API handles a variety of sync functions on both iOS and Android devices. Dropbox will now treat files as if they were local, managing syncing, caching, change tracking, and offline access. These functions were previously handled by app developers who had to code all of this themselves. » Read the rest
Google has made it clear during their I/O Keynote that they are all in on Google+ and are really trying hard to push it to consumers. They’ve shown the possibilities and features that Google+ can offer that no other social media network can. The biggest problem Google had was that there was no option for third party applications to integrate with Google+ such as what Facebook and Twitter have. Google has made that one step closer to reality today with the announcement of the upcoming Google+ API for Android and iOS. Supported out-of-the-box are Google+ sign-in, a share plug-in to share your app content to the G+ stream, +1 button integration, Google+ history functions, and a personalization feature, which will allow developers to pull in public G+ content and use it in their app. This is a huge step for Google+ as this can really help to bring more users.
I truly feel that Google+ has so much potential, even the potential to overcome Facebook in the future. Google+ has the tools and features to become a social media giant if it’s given enough time and the right marketing. Any of our readers starting to use Google+ over Facebook? Or is Facebook just too hard to stop using considering everyone uses it? Let us know!
source: Google+ Developers
We already knew that HTC had planned on releasing the Beats Audio API for developers to integrate the music tweaking software into their own apps. What we didn’t know was that HTC also planned on granting access to a few other APIs as HTCdev announced the availability of four important HTC APIs. The announced APIs are:
- Beats Audio API
- Lockscreen API
- Mobile Device Management API
- And soon a HTC MediaLink HD API
Now developers can better create apps that integrate deeper into the HTC device experience. For example, accessing various apps directly from the lockscreen, view/listen to an apps media on the stock HTC media player, and the ability to enjoy Beats Audio from within other music apps such as PowerAMP. In addition, HTC plans on listing newly created apps that leverage the HTC APIs within the HTC Hub. A place where consumers can go to find all the apps that are tailored to their HTC device.
It will only be a matter of time before the development community starts pumping out creative ways in which to use their apps. I would be stoked to see Beats Audio tied in with Google Music. What would you like to see come out of this?
The adoption of Google Music has been dismal. Maybe it’s because we expect Google services to erupt like a volcano and immediately soar into the sky, blanketing the people below in Google awesome ash. Or maybe it’s because iTunes, Pandora and Slacker Radio already have a foothold ’round those parts. Or it could be that Google Music is only currently available in the U.S.
My guess is as good as yours, however there might be some sunshine on the horizon in the form of a developer, Simon Weber. Simon has been working on his unofficial Google Music API for a month, and has pretty much every functionality of the service coded into the API. Only one major implementation is missing at the moment: support for uploading formats other than .mp3. Unfortunately, however, the API is currently coded in Python, restricting it to desktop platforms. It isn’t impossible to port it to a mobile-friendly language though, and thankfully Aaron Gingrich of Android Police has put Simon in contact with CM9 [music player] Apollo developer Andrew Neal.
This could mean we see a port of the API to mobile platforms, pending the result of Neal and Weber’s collaboration. The only problem that will immediately come to mind reading “unofficial”, “Google”, and “API” is action taken by Google to, well, cease and desist. I don’t think that’s likely to happen, as Mr. Weber will be interning at Google this summer — possibly bringing official Google support for the API in the near future. This could be great news for Google Music, as integration into Android applications could surely inject some much needed life into the service’s disappointing adoption stats.
source: android police
If you are familiar with HTC and keep up with the latest Android news you probably already know that HTC has teamed up with Dr. Dre and added Beats Audio to some of their newer devices. You might also know that HTC even invested in Beats Audio stock and probably wants to see it succeed just as much as Dre does. Reports are saying that HTC will be releasing a Beats Audio developer API and HTC says the tools will “allow third-party developers to harness the potential of Beats Audio and bring that top-notch audio experience to their own apps.”
At this time there is no word of a release date for the tools, I am sure excited to see what developers can come up with though. What app do you think could benefit from a little Beats Audio integration? Let us know in the comments below.