Google has taken the liberty of refreshing its Play icon library, including Google Play, Play Store, Play Movies & TV, Play Music, Play Games, Play Books, Play Newsstand. Part of the aim, it says, is to achieve a uniform look across its apps, and that's certainly evident with the results.
The refresh will make its way across devices and the web over the coming weeks.
Nintendo has launched an app for Android and iOS in the US and Europe that lets you interact with your Mii and your friends' Miis. Miitomo, as it's called, features Mii creation, customization, photography, and social media sharing.
Also included: a minigame called Miitomo Drop where you 'drop' your Mii and depending on which platform it lands, you win a given prize (sometimes clothing). Drop costs coins which can be obtained through in-app purchases.
Google's excellent Calculator app is now available on the Play Store, so you can replace less pretty options like the Samsung Calculator with it, if you don't have the former installed by default.
As you'd expect, it supports basic calculations, but also trigonometric, logarithmic, and exponential functions.
As a bonus, an Android Wear Calculator is bundled into the app, so you can make calculations on the go on your smartwatch.
Hit the source or the Play Store app to download.
The Snapchat team is looking to revolutionize online communication further with its Chat 2.0 update. One of the goals with it is to make speaking and video chat a seamless transition from text chat; one tap will now do the trick. But it goes further than that.
"You can start by sending a few chats, and when your friend shows up, start talking or video chatting instantly with one tap," they explain. "Your friend can simply listen if you want to sing them a song, or watch if you have a new puppy to show them. If they aren't there, you can quickly send an audio note to say what you mean. And sometimes, a sticker says it best."
Google is mixing things up a bit with Chromecast, renaming the app Google Cast, in what it says is an effort to "better reflect that Google Cast technology is now supported across a wide range of devices such as Chromecast, TVs, displays and speakers." It revealed the news just after confirming its partnership with Vizio, which will see Google Cast built into the company's upcoming P-series displays, as well as to its soundbars and speakers.
Along with a new name comes an update, which will roll out this week. With it you can expect video content discovery, expanded app discovery, customizable backdrops, and more.
The "Father", CEO, and Founder of Spotify Daniel Ek has revealed via Twitter that his music streaming service has hit 30 million subscribers. About this time last year, the count was 20 million, so it's fast-growing, to say the least.
By comparison, competing service Apple Music sat at 11 milllion subscribers as of last month. Catching up or exceeding the Swedish company is certainly plausible, but it has quite the headstart and appears to know what it's doing, so watching this cat and mouse game in the coming years will prove interesting.
Windows 10 Insiders get the benefit of some major enhancements to the Maps app today, namely to search, but also navigation and interface, among other areas.
For search, there's the new ability to conduct and view multiple searches simultaneously (e.g. see nearby hotels and restaurants at the same time, or see multiple directions at the same time), with the option to view them separately if need be. Algorithms are improved, too, which closer and better results.
Regarding the interface and navigation, navigation buttons are now at the top of the app on desktop and at the bottom on mobile, making everything more intuitive whatever device you're on; labels are now found directly on the map; elements can be hidden or shown at will; public transit routes are easier to follow with more precise instructions and an improved design, and Cortana will give you instructions when enabled.
Twitter is retiring the Tweetdeck standalone app, supposedly to "better focus on enhancing your TweetDeck experience." As of April 15, it will be a web-only application, although as Twitter reminds, Chrome users can pin it to their desktop by following these instructions:
- Open tweetdeck.com in Chrome
- Click Customize and control > More tools > Add to taskbar
- You can now launch TweetDeck directly from your taskbar
Things get a little smoother between Twitter and Tweetdeck, too: if you log in to Twitter.com, that will also keep you logged in at Tweetdeck.com, so there's no need going forward to keep switching back and forth. This change will be slowly rolled out over the next few weeks about.
That new Twitter for Windows 10 design that launched last year for PCs and tablets is now available for mobile devices too as of today.
With it, you can try out 'Moments' (essentially a 'best of Twitter' feature), group DMs, Tweet video support (including capturing and editing), easier tweet quoting, and more. To grab it, head to the Windows Store.
And for desktop and tablet users, there's a new treat for you, too: a dark mode theme. To access it, navigate to Settings > Personalization.
Apple has partnered with digital distributor Dubset Media Holdings to bring many thousands of previously unlicensed DJ remixes and mixes -- or in old people terms: that DJ music the kids are listening to -- to its Apple Music service. For now, these aren't available anywhere else, but Dubstep claims every distributor will be supported in time.
The deal is made possible by Dubset's agreements with over 14,000 record labels and publishers, as well as its MixBank technology (used in combination with other proprietary and related software), which can analyze songs to determine original artists and make sure their labels and publishers as well as DJs are paid accordingly, all at flat rates. It's an impressive feat given one of these mixes can have more than 600 different rights holders, and one that's already making both DJs and labels happy.