Saturday, January 31, 2015

Flipboard for Android now serves Topics in India and UK.

Flipboard is my favorite news magazine on Android. Notice I wrote magazine instead of news reader. Unlike other numerous news apps in Google Play store, Flipboard has that distinctive feature that lets you flip through your news like you naturally do with a paper-based magazine. Of course there is more to Flipboard than the flip.

Flipboard news magazine serves Topics. Actually, you start by following topics that are of interest to you to create your personal magazine. And you are not limited to magazines. Flipboard also lets you follow people and connect to your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Flipboard was updated today that brings Topics to India and UK. The change log states that "each topic is powered by the best stories from publishers, websites and magazines". I assume these are localized sources. Performance improvements is also part of the update that makes Flipboard opens faster and sections to load faster. 

Download Flipboard free in Google Play store.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Chrome Beta gets pull to reload pages in update.

The latest iteration of Chrome Beta for Android contains an interesting and useful feature. It allows you to pull from the top of pages to reload the page. This addition is handy especially on devices with small screens where accessing the refresh button can be tedious. If you do know what Chrome Beta is yet, it is a version of Chrome for Android that lets you preview and test new features before they get released to the official version of Chrome for Android. It also provides a channel for users to provide feedback and  for filing a bug.

If you want to join the group of early adopters, download Chrome Beta on Google Play store.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

OneDrive lets you limit camera backup to only when charging your Android.

Microsoft's OneDrive for Android has been updated with a very interesting feature today. The cloud storage service is now capable of backing up your precious pictures when your device is charging. A nice addition that will help save power on your Android devices. So, if you're not worried your device gets lost or stolen or bricked by the time you get to a charging station, you will like this feature. Even more so when your out in the field.

The update brings OneDrive for Android to version 2.9.4 and includes the usual bug fixes and stability improvements.

Download the update in Google Play store.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Google Sheets finally lets you hide rows and columns.

Google Sheets just got better today with the ability to hide rows and columns. A feature Microsoft Office users are accustomed to for years on their PCs, tablets and phones. The "hide" feature comes in handy if you need to keep focus in a small part of your worksheet. The update also makes it easier to insert a link. Google also worked out some bugs and improved performance.

Google Sheet is available free in Google Play store.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Udemy now lets you pay using your local currency.

Udemy is a popular online courses and training provider with over 4 million people who signed up to learn. The service has over 14 thousands courses available for you to choose and improve your career and learn on the go with the help of expert instructors who built courses on almost every topic you can think of: programming, Entrepreneurship, Yoga, Salsa, cake decorating. With the Udemy app on your phone or tablet, take your courses in your pocket and study anywhere.

Today's update for Android lets you buy courses using your local currency. Note that you do get some courses free. Udemy also worked hard to clear out those pesky bugs.

Download Udemy free in Google Play store

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Google Translate: Use your phone camera for instant translation of sign and text.

A must have for every traveler, Google Translate is your best friend when travelling to countries where you do not fully understand the language. Spoken language translation is awesome, but sign and text translation is even better. The latest update to Google Translate adds a new feature called Word Lens which lets users point their camera to a sign or text and the app will instantly translate it for you. And there's more: Word lens will do that offline, without the need for an internet connection. The cost reduction on roaming will be huge. Currently this new feature supports English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

Another interesting feature is the automatic detection of the language used in a conversation. This works using speech input and Google Translate will recognize which language is being spoken and do the translation on the fly, similar to the feature Microsoft unveiled last year for Skype. Google claims that the instant translation will allow users enjoy a fluid conversation.

Google Translate is available for free in the Play store.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Flipboard for Android improved.

My favorite news reader on Android, Flipboard, got updated today. The app has been updated with a bunch of features for a better experience like the improved pull to refresh and double tap to zoom on images inside articles and more. See the What's new list below:

  • Improved pull to refresh for your subscriptions
  • Double tap to zoom on images opened from inside articles.
  • Organize your magazines in your profile, just tap and hold to move them around.
  • Easier and faster to flip your magazines, tap the + button to begin.
  • Lower data usage.
  • Bug fixes and performance improvements.
Download Flipboard for free on Google Play store.

Friday, January 9, 2015

New sticker packs and improved video call experience in Hangouts update.

I often wonder how many users actively use Hangouts for video calls. Google did not communicate the numbers and when Google does not brag about numbers, it must not be enough to their liking. I have hangouts installed, thus contributing to the 500 million downloads. That number does not reflect the number of active users. Personally, I use Skype because everyone I know use it. The only people I kind-of know who uses Hangouts are tech sites like PocketNow.

Users of Hangouts will be glad to learn about an update that includes new sticker packs. Among useful features is the ability to see the last time your contacts were online. Another update lets you share your location with your friends should they ask. Finally, the update includes the usual bug fixes.

What's new:

  • New sticker packs!
  • See the last time your contacts were online
  • When friends ask where you are, share your location with one click using smart sharing suggestions
  • Improved video cal experience and miscellaneous bug fixes.