Google Text-to-Speech 3.0 update brings high quality voices

by Jeff Causey on
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Another update from Google, joining an update to Google Play Music and Google Play Games, brings some enhancements to Google Text-to-Speech as it ratchets up to version 3.0. Perhaps the most significant change included in this latest release is support for high quality voices. The files are significantly larger for new voices with the female U.K. voice weighing in at 276MB. The larger files sizes do create some delays loading the voices and getting output in certain situations. » Read the rest

Samsung Galaxy S5 rumors revealed by @evleaks

by Harrison Kaminsky on
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We were already pretty sure that the next big installment of Samsung’s Galaxy series would be called the Galaxy S5, and a recent tweet by @evleaks suggests that the rumors are true. The device is coming soon, and although we don’t know much about it, a second tweet from @evleaks showed an image of an .apk file with the word “QHD” in the file name. (3DTourViewer_WQHD_K.apk.) This may or may not have to do with the fact that the phone could come with a QHD display, but if it does, that’s a pretty big deal. We’ll see soon enough.

Sources: @evleaks 1 / @evleaks 2

Google Dialer limited to Nexus and GPE devices, manual install for KitKat ROMs now available

by Jeff Causey on
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When Google announced the Nexus 5 and Android 4.4 KitKat, one of the “new” apps that was launched was a new phone dialer that came with some unique features. The dialer came with an updated UI, featured Internet-based caller ID, and perhaps most notably, the ability to search for businesses and contacts, both on the device and from the Internet, from within the dialer. For now, it looks like Google is limiting the availability of this new dialer to Nexus devices and Google Play Edition smartphones. If you really want to get a copy of the dialer, it is now available if you meet a couple minimum requirements including root and an Android 4.4 ROM, either official or custom.

The dialer is available as both a flashable ZIP file to be installed via a custom recovery or as an APK file that is placed in /system/priv-app. For the latter option, you will need to be able to change the permissions of the APK file. Some users who have tried the install have reported the app icon does not show up in the app tray. It appears the solution to this problem is to use Nova Launcher and its feature that allows you to run a specific activity within an app. It also appears the default dialer needs to remain active in order for users to receive calls, but this could vary by device.

If you want to give the dialer a try, hit the source link to get the files and detailed install instructions.

source: AndroidPolice

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

by Joe Sirianni on
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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

Sideload this new apk to get Google Play Music support on Google Glass (Update XE11)

by Joe Sirianni on
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Did you happen to drop the new XE11 update on your set of Google glasses? If you did, here’s an update feature you may not know it had. The new XE11 update introduced a plethora of changes to the device but did you know there’s support for Google Play Music? And while there hasn’t been an official announcement, yet, there is certainly support for the application. Sideloading the new apk will allow access to several commands specific to Google Glass which will in turn allow control for music playback.

To get the function rolling you’ll need to say “ok glass, listen to….” and just insert your playlist name, artist, album or song. You’ll instantly be met with a card that pops up starting the feature. In addition, a card remains up for you to control other functions of Play Music such as play, rewind, skip and stop. In addition, you’ll be able to control the volume and engage radio play via the hardware’s touchpad. If you’re one of the lucky ones to have Glass check out the full instructions below on how to sideload the apk to get started.    » Read the rest

Google Play Music Update 5.2.1233L Now Available, Adds “I’m Feeling Lucky Radio” Feature

by Joe Sirianni on
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It wasn’t long ago that Google rolled out a version of the Play Music app which allowed genre-based radio on our Android devices and now they’ve just kicked off another phase of the application offering an “I’m feeling lucky radio” feature.  The apk, version 5.3.1233L, will slowly be rolling out to all devices (if not already) and will allow one to have the app suggest and play music based on your previous selections. The auto generated radio station will be a welcomed addition as many who aren’t sure what they’re in the mood for can allow the app to choose for them based on what they like most. As of now, it’s being reported that a “mix of everything” functionality is kind of missing and it tends to only play mostly from the genre you play most but we have high hopes for the app and that the functionality will be quickly integrated. Do you think the app has what it takes to be a Slacker and Pandora killer? With the All Access feature and now the I’m Feeling Lucky Radio functionality, we think it certainly has the potential to claim a stake in the market. Feel feel to drop your opinion in the comments below.

Update: The apk should be available for updating via the Play Store now if you haven’t received it already.

» Read the rest

Tablet optimized version of Twitter app leaks, get it now

by Jeff Causey on
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For the second time in a week, a video for one thing reveals information about something else. First, it was Google’s video of the unveiling of the new Android KitKat statute that inadvertently revealed the new Nexus 5. Now, Samsung’s video of the Unpacked 2013 Episode 2 event from Berlin, where they revealed the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition, was discovered to have included video of a tablet optimized version of the official Twitter app. Reports indicate Twitter may be trying to get the genie back in the bottle, with the help of Samsung, by getting the video pulled. Nevertheless, Android fans have been scrambling for more information and have even managed to snag a copy of the apk. » Read the rest

Fingerprint scanning a possibility for Samsung Galaxy Note III

by Jeff Causey on
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Samsung’s Galaxy Note III device is scheduled to be announced this week, so it is only fitting that rumors abound concerning what we will discover. The latest technology that seems to have been identified is some type of fingerprint scanning capability for the Galaxy Note III. Twitter tipster @evleaks managed to get his hands on a list of APK files included on the forthcoming device. The list is quite long thanks to Samsung’s TouchWiz interface and buried in the list is a file named FingerprintService.apk. The presence of this file would seem to imply Samsung is planning to provide the ability to scan fingerprints as part of the device’s security capabilities.

Implementation of fingerprint scanners in smartphones is not a new concept as seen on the Motorola ATRIX 4G. More recently we have been witness to the on again, off again rumors regarding a fingerprint scanner included in the HTC One Max.  Even Apple is supposedly exploring fingerprint scanner options for their devices. All of this activity is likely driven by the increased focus on security as smartphones and tablets begin to displace traditional computer form factors and carry more sensitive information.

source: @evleaks

Give the new Motorola X camera app a spin with this apk

by Jared Peters on
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Motorola’s new camera software is setting itself up to be one of the major selling points of the device, and with good reason. It’s clean, minimalist, and will hopefully give users plenty of options to get excellent photos. If you don’t want to wait until the official device to test drive it, though, you don’t have to anymore thanks to the latest ripped camera apk from newer Motorola devices thanks to Android Police.

The interface is just as clean as we’ve seen it, and most of the features work, including video recording and taking pictures, both single shots and burst shots. Unfortunately, the wrist flicking gestures don’t work, panoramic mode causes a crash, and the slow-motion and HDR modes both don’t function, so it’s not 100% ready for prime time. Still, though, if you don’t absolutely have to have those features and just want a new toy to play with on your phone, it’s 90% functional. Hit the break below to grab the apk to install on your phone.

source: Android Police

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