Flipboard has been busy and the results have surfaced over the past couple days as they announced their acquisition of Zite, a partnership with CNN, and even released an update to their app that adds better support for Google+ users. The purchase of Zite and the addition of CNN content to the app are likely linked to each other as Zite was formerly a part of CNN.
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.
Google began rolling out an update to Google Play Music today that will be especially helpful to users who find themselves without any kind of connection to the Internet. Radio stations can now be pinned and can be listened to even if you are offline. Other items included in the update should make the interface a little easier to navigate.
Google’s Play Games application has been updated to v1.5. You are now able to view invitations and see what the people in your circles are playing. The settings have also moved from the Action Bar to the sidebar. Lastly, you can view invites in “Matches” and “Find Games” (formerly “Recommended Games”) will show recommended games.
APK download link is available below thanks to Android Police.
APK File: Google Play Games v1.5
via: Android Police
Shazam is working on an update to their music identification app to bring users a new, cleaner interface. This should make it easier to preview, buy, and share songs or TV show information. Shazam is also improving access to lyrics, showing them as soon as a song is matched. Shazam is also improving the speed with which information about broadcast TV shows is displayed.
Popular media casting app AllCast from developer Koushik Dutta is being watch closely by many after he demonstrated the ability to mirror an Android device to a Chromecast. It is still not clear whether that capability will ever be released and if it is, whether it will be part of AllCast. A new update to the app that hit Google Play today did not bring the mirroring capability with it, but a major revamp of the UI was included. Koush also added support for Muzei along with a whole host of bug fixes.
Just yesterday we reported that invites had started to go out to Moto X owners on the Verizon network inviting them to participate in a soak test presumably for the Android 4.2.2 update. Another step was taken by the carrier today indicating the update could be only days away from release as a support document for the KitKat update has been posted to the Verizon web site. The document indicates the update includes some security and stability enhancements, including better synchronization of some services; better roaming connectivity; improvements to battery life and Isis Mobile Wallet; and some Verizon app updates.
For those not participating in the soak test, your patience should be rewarded shortly.
source: Verizon Wireless
HTC said they wanted to get the EVO 4G LTE on Sprint updated to Android 4.3 by mid-February, and they’ve hit that goal. HTC’s VP Martin Fichter posted a link on his Twitter feed to the RUU for Android 4.3 for the EVO 4G LTE.
HTC RUU’s are update utilities that let users manually update a device to a certain software version. In this case, the RUU updates the EVO to Android 4.3, with one catch; it has to wipe your phone to install.
Apparently, HTC wanted to push an OTA update to the device, but due to memory restrictions on the EVO, they had to go with an RUU, evidenced by the mandatory storage wipe. Still, that’s a small price to pay for getting Android 4.3 and Sense 5. If you want to manually update your device, grab the download link below, connect your phone to your computer through USB, then start the EXE and follow the instructions. Be sure you’ve got everything backed up before you proceed, too.
With TuneIn Radio Pro, you can record radio and listen to it at a later time or date— but with today’s new update, you can save these sound files to an SD card to save yourself some internal storage. Pretty handy, right?
The app’s car mode also has a new look with an improved user interface. Alarm issues and other bugs were fixed, and the size of the Google Play logo in the app for purchasing music was reduced for convenience. Hit the break below for a link to the app in the Play Store. If you’re a first-timer, it’ll set you back only $3.99.
T-Mobile has approved the latest KitKat update for their version of the Moto X, bringing the device up to Android 4.4.2. It’s an incremental update from 4.4, but it brings a few extra features including better wireless printing options, improved battery life, and a fix for delayed emails.
It makes sense that this model of the Moto X was the first to see this update, as T-Mobile’s variant of the Moto X is just an unlocked Moto X, so it doesn’t have to go through the carrier for any approval. Motorola handles pushing the updates directly to the device. You should begin seeing the update notification on your device soon, but you can manually go into settings and check for the update to speed the process along.